Logo

 

Banner Image:   Baptist-Times-banner-2000x370-
Template Mode:   Baptist Times
Icon
    Post     Tweet


Everyday conversations with Matthew by John Holdsworth


Holdsworth brings the situations of ordinary readers into conversation with scholarship to help make the text accessible and practically or pastorally useful in specific instances



Everyday matthewEveryday conversations with Matthew
By John Holdsworth
SCM
ISBN 9780334057468
Reviewed by John Rackley


‘Although having a common purpose, each of the Synoptic Gospels is an individual and crafted attempt to make the Christian message about Jesus relevant to its own community.'

So how are they to be read today? John Holdsworth creates an imaginary community.

Among them is Chris, a recent convert who is responding to exciting worship and wants to research the faith documents but is put off the way the gospel starts.

TJ is surprised to meet some Christians who are political activists like himself. Brian has angrily walked away from his church which he regards as rule-bound and conservative. Nikki is worried about the power of social media and wonders what she can trust in the news. David is a disillusioned minister.

Holdsworth lines up this cast with others and lets their need introduce each chapter which describes a facet of the message and ministry of Jesus. His style is fluid and clear. He deliberately refers to scholarship regularly and offers tasks and questions which arise from the text.

He suggests that ‘in these texts we see Jesus facing up to conflict and controversy, ministering at the margins, overturning presuppositions about insiders and outsiders, privileging the powerless, demonstrating the authority of ethical leadership, challenging allegiance to empire and institutional religion’.

Jesus is a talker. He chats. He preaches. He argues. He exhorts. His actions arise from his words. Through Jesus, Christians have a message from God. This needs to be explored and explained.

After a time in the shadow of the other gospels Holdsworth believes that Matthew needs to become the ‘gospel’ for today. For in this gospel Jesus is the Teacher and in a culture of many voices his voice needs to be heard, not only in the deeds of his people but in their stated convictions and conversation. Matthew is the coffee-shop gospel. 
 

John Rackley is a LEP Associate Minister in Leicester




 
Baptist Times, 22/11/2019
    Post     Tweet
If you want to slow down and spread advent over an entire month, here is a super little package to help you along
A literary analysis of the Gospel, which aims to show how and why John has written as he does
An intriguing, deeply moving and occasionally puzzling read, which raises more questions than answers
Offers useful principles for Christian politics, but while the author rejects the fundamentalist view of Scripture, he does not offer a viable alternative
Personal grief leads to a fresh understanding of the Psalms - and 'one of the best devotional books I have read in a long time'
Emily Owen explores the idea that God has always been leaving personalised calling cards to his followers to remind them of his presence, and the result is a rewarding, meditative read, free of sentimentality
     Reviews 
    Posted: 08/10/2021
    Posted: 17/09/2021
    Posted: 30/07/2021