The Voice of Conscience

The Voice of Conscience : The Church in the Mind of Martin Luther King, Jr

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Before he was a civil rights leader, the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., was a man of the church. His father was a pastor, and much of young Martin's time was spent in Baptist churches. He went on to seminary and received a Ph.D. in theology. In 1953, he took over leadership of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Atlanta. The church was his home. But, as he began working for civil rights, King became a fierce critic of the churches, both black and white. He railed against white Christian leaders who urged him to be patient in the struggle-or even opposed civil rights altogether. And, while the black church was the platform from which King launched the struggle for civil rights, he was deeply ambivalent toward the church as an institution, and saw it as in constant need of reform. In this book, Lewis Baldwin explores King's complex relationship with the Christian church, from his days growing up at Ebenezer Baptist, to his work as a pastor, to his battles with American churches over civil rights, to his vision for the global church. King, Baldwin argues, had a robust and multifaceted view of the nature and purpose of the church that serves as a model for the church in the 21st century.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 384 pages
  • 160.02 x 236.22 x 30.48mm | 498.95g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195380312
  • 9780195380316

About Lewis V. Baldwin

Lewis Baldwin Professor of Religious Studies, Vanderbilt University
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Review quote

A uniquely complete and brilliantly documented contribution to our understanding of the actual roots of the theology of Martin Luther King, Jr., both directly stated and implied. Baldwin writes from the position of one who shares King's angle of spiritual vision from deep inside the Black Church of the deep South, frankly facing its faults, and lovingly affirming and adding to its immense contributions. This work is without parallel, for thoroughness and authenticity
in its field. * Rev. Dr. Henry H. Mitchell, author of Black Church Beginnings, 1650-1990 * I have read many volumes on Martin Luther King, Jr. over the past decade. Voice of Conscience eclipses them all. Impeccably researched and masterfully written, it propels Lewis V. Baldwin to the rank of top King scholar in the world. King lives in this lively and instructive book. * Rufus Burrow, Jr., author of Martin Luther King Jr. for Armchair Theologians * A uniquely complete and brilliantly documented contribution to our understanding of the actual roots of the theology of Martin Luther King, Jr. This work is without parallel for thoroughness and authenticity in its field. * Henry H. Mitchell, author of Black Preaching: The Recovery of a Powerful Art * The Voice of Conscience is a masterpiece and a crowning achievement to a career dedicated to theological reflections on the contributions of Martin Luther King, Jr. * CHOICE * Baldwin has done a superb job.... For anyone interested in King and the role of the church in the struggle for justice, this is a must read. * Church History *
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Table of contents

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6 ratings
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