Reality, Grief, Hope: Three Urgent Prophetic Tasks

Reality, Grief, Hope: Three Urgent Prophetic Tasks


By (author) Walter Brueggemann

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  • Publisher: William B Eerdmans Publishing Co
  • Format: Paperback | 144 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 213mm x 20mm | 227g
  • Publication date: 28 March 2014
  • Publication City/Country: Grand Rapids
  • ISBN 10: 0802870724
  • ISBN 13: 9780802870728
  • Sales rank: 81,335

Product description

Walter Brueggemann is one of the most highly regarded Old Testament scholars of our time; talk-show host Krista Tippett has even called him "a kind of theological rock star." In this new book Brueggemann probes the tasks performed by the ancient prophets of Israel and points out striking correlations between the destruction of Jerusalem in 587 b.c.e. and the catastrophic crisis of 9/11 in a.d. 2001. Brueggemann identifies a characteristic ideology of "exceptionalism" - chosenness, entitlement, privilege - which must be countered by prophetic realism and truth-telling. Denial must give way to honest grief. And, finally, widespread despair must be overcome by a buoyant hope. This sequence of ideology-realism, denial-grief, and despair-hope corresponds to Brueggemann's unpacking of the books of Jeremiah, Lamentations, and Isaiah. Thoughtful readers will find provocative fare aplenty in Brueggemann's Reality, Grief, Hope.

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Author information

Walter Brueggemann is professor emeritus of Old Testament at Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Georgia. His many other books include A Social Reading of the Old Testament, The Threat of Life, Theology of the Old Testament, and The Prophetic Imagination.

Review quote

Shane Claiborne--author and activist"Walter Brueggemann is a legend. . . . With typical Brueggemann brilliance, here he brings the prophets of old into the contemporary world and dares us to look through their eyes. If you love Walter, you'll love this. If you've never heard of him, get ready to get hooked."Brian D. McLaren--author/speaker/activist"For many of us, Walter Brueggemann has been a mentor from afar. We have learned to read the Bible in fresh ways because of his scholarly insight, pastoral wisdom, and prophetic imagination. Reality, Grief, Hope takes us from the world of the Bible to the headlines of today, opening inconvenient but desperately needed truths. . . . If you've never read Brueggemann, here is your entry point. If you've been reading him for years, this one is not to be missed."Gale A. Yee--Episcopal Divinity School"Through a carefully nuanced analogy with the destruction of Jerusalem in 587 B.C.E., Brueggemann's Reality, Grief, Hope presents a passionate and timely exploration of the theological crises that have infected the U.S., particularly since the 9/11 attacks. . . . A splendid work of public theology!"Stanley Hauerwas--Duke Divinity School"It is one thing to call for a prophetic imagination; it is quite another matter to actually have a prophetic imagination. This book clearly shows Brueggemann to have the unrelenting realism' that possessed the imagination of the ancient prophets. . . . With steely-eyed observation he helps us see, amid the despair that has gripped American life since 2001, that there is hope -- a hope grounded in the everyday work of the church. This is Brueggemann at his very best."Richard Horsley--University of Massachusetts, Boston"Walter Brueggemann is widely appreciated as the most insightful and compelling interpreter of the Bible as it bears on current social and religious crises. Here he discerns how the arrogant American exceptionalism of God's new Israel' has been powerfully informed by the biblical ideolog