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The Cross and the Switchblade

Average Rating 4.5
( 47 )
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(33)

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(4)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

The Original in this Rare Genre

The story of how David Wilkerson came to found Teen Challenge should be a must read for anyone who follows Jesus Christ. The Cross and the Switchblade describes how Wilkerson put feet on his faith that took him from rural Pennsylvania to the streets of New York City. It...
The story of how David Wilkerson came to found Teen Challenge should be a must read for anyone who follows Jesus Christ. The Cross and the Switchblade describes how Wilkerson put feet on his faith that took him from rural Pennsylvania to the streets of New York City. It's the story of how a pastor followed the leading of the Holy Spirit and reached out to minister to people with whom the churches would not associate.
Wilkerson describes in his book how essential it is to meet the unloved where they are, rather than waiting for them to show up in church all dressed up and ready to worship within the ranks of the clean and respectable. He also rightly emphasizes the importance of follow up, how one can't just expect to go out and distribute tracts or preach from street corners without also developing real, loving relationships with people and ministering to their needs, both spiritually and physically.

Now that Teen Challenge International has grown to over 200 centers around the world, it is interesting to note that the struggle in recovery ministry continues to be much the same: It's extremely difficult to get people to reach out in love to those who have never been loved, and it's nearly impossible to get church members to venture outside their doors to love their neighbors as they love themselves. I thank him for sharing the story of his work. The Cross and the Switchblade is a little dated in communicating to young people. The problems remain the same and the good news of the Gospel transends time.

posted by 308008 on November 22, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

church and gangs

A true story about a preist 'getting messages from god' feels like he has to go to New York and save these five boys from getting put in jail for a murder trial. While the priest is on this journey he learns many things about boys and girls related to gangs and why they...
A true story about a preist 'getting messages from god' feels like he has to go to New York and save these five boys from getting put in jail for a murder trial. While the priest is on this journey he learns many things about boys and girls related to gangs and why they act the way that they do, and he can't blame them for it. The preist says if he can't get these boys out of trouble, he feels like he is letting god down.

posted by Anonymous on March 11, 2005

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    The Original in this Rare Genre

    The story of how David Wilkerson came to found Teen Challenge should be a must read for anyone who follows Jesus Christ. The Cross and the Switchblade describes how Wilkerson put feet on his faith that took him from rural Pennsylvania to the streets of New York City. It's the story of how a pastor followed the leading of the Holy Spirit and reached out to minister to people with whom the churches would not associate.<BR/>Wilkerson describes in his book how essential it is to meet the unloved where they are, rather than waiting for them to show up in church all dressed up and ready to worship within the ranks of the clean and respectable. He also rightly emphasizes the importance of follow up, how one can't just expect to go out and distribute tracts or preach from street corners without also developing real, loving relationships with people and ministering to their needs, both spiritually and physically.<BR/><BR/>Now that Teen Challenge International has grown to over 200 centers around the world, it is interesting to note that the struggle in recovery ministry continues to be much the same: It's extremely difficult to get people to reach out in love to those who have never been loved, and it's nearly impossible to get church members to venture outside their doors to love their neighbors as they love themselves. I thank him for sharing the story of his work. The Cross and the Switchblade is a little dated in communicating to young people. The problems remain the same and the good news of the Gospel transends time.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    RIP: Pastor David Wilkerson

    What a great book and classic that helped launch a great international ministry. Great is the reward of Pastor Wilkerson who has recently gone on to be with our God in Jesus Christ the Lord. This book really describes the inception of a great ministry and was just really the start of it. One of only three books in this genre that ever saw the light of day in ministry to at risk youth. The publishing world has kept testimonials as this in the dark but a few broke out with the light of the cross and gospel of Jesus Christ.

    Pastor Wikerson's life was not in vain and his ministry continues on with a legacy of rescued souls that he would give all the credit to Jesus Messiah for.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2011

    What+an+awsome+God%21

    This+book+is+an+awesome+testimony+of+what+faith+in+God+can+do%21+%0A

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 30, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    a GREAT, true story

    Anyone interested in God, gangs, inner city missions or what faith can do NEEDS to read this remarkalbe story...based on TRUE events. David Wilkerson wanted to take the Gospel to a bunch of inner city gang memebers he heard about, and in following God's prompting has changed the lives of countless people...those he ministerd to in the city and those people who have read his story. <BR/><BR/>It is also a movie worth watching...w/ Pat Boone in the leading role and a VERY young Erik Estrada as the toughest gang member, Nicky Cruz...the subject of the book Run Baby, Run.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2008

    BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!

    This is the best book I ever read. The most encouraging book I ever read. Absolutely incredible!!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2007

    HEY YOU -- READ THIS BOOK!

    Do you think you're TOO BAD for God to love you? READ THIS BOOK! Have you always doubted God's existence? READ THIS BOOK! Do you think that God has turned His back on the poor and downtrodden of this world? READ THIS BOOK! Dave Wilkerson, a country preacher, 'heard' a calling on him as he was reading Life Magazine. Though he tried to ignore it, the Voice was calling him to Bedford-Stuyvesant, a terribly poor and crime-ridden section of New York City. He obeyed the call. He had no idea what he would encounter. 'Had he known, he may have thought twice! Praise God he didn't!' The result was the start of Teen Challenge Centers -- 'alternative' treatment centers for the drug-addicted -- which are now located worldwide. These Centers are quite successful in getting addicts off drugs without medication. 'I'd rather not spoil any of that for you -- you should really read it for yourself!' That first trip to New York changed Dave Wilkerson's life, and the lives of literally thousands of others. 'Wait until you read about Nicky! He is Nicky Cruz, a now well-known evangelist with quite a message of his own!' Keep in mind that this is a true story! 'The beginning of this story took place nearly 50 years ago -- contrary to the 30 years ago that one reviewer mentioned.' If you'll allow it, this book will change your heart forever! Dave Wilkerson answered the universal call 'which, sadly, not many of us do', and that's to love one another, to carry one another's burdens. I haven't done this book justice in this review. There are many things that happened that a reader simply must read and experience for himself. I do encourage you to read it. I assure you, you won't regret it. All these years later, it is just as powerful as it was when it was first written.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2005

    Dated But Still Dynamic.

    My grandfather gave me this book and it is a good story. Gangs actually use to fight at one time. Wow, these guys were pretty brave and crazy. Today they just shoot and run. I like how the guys became friends with the Preacher and the postive influence he had on them. This was a good story, a long time like back in my Grand Pops day but I could not put it down.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2005

    church and gangs

    A true story about a preist 'getting messages from god' feels like he has to go to New York and save these five boys from getting put in jail for a murder trial. While the priest is on this journey he learns many things about boys and girls related to gangs and why they act the way that they do, and he can't blame them for it. The preist says if he can't get these boys out of trouble, he feels like he is letting god down.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2004

    Boring?

    This book is an inspiration for all people, but it moves along slowly. The characters are true New Yorkers. All in all, read it, but make sure you have time to.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2001

    in lock up

    Im 16 im in a detention center for people under 18 and the book was very good because it touches base with me. It was proof that people can change and now we are trying to get a copy of run baby run

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2000

    Excellent and Moving!

    I received this small book as a graduation present years ago. I could not stop reading once I started. The testimony shared in this book changed the way I viewed God's ability to move right here in our very own backyard. He is incredible! Be careful with this book--it might change your life!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2014

    5

    Leslie has quickly become my favorite author. I read 2-3 books a week and Ilove her work.
    This story is fast paced andwell written. As a retired firefighter from Savannah i understand both the characters and the setting.
    It is so worth the time and cost to read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2014

    The God of wonders!!!

    I have had the oportunity to read many inspirational christian books in my life. But these book is on a league of it's own. The greatest exmaple i've read till these point on how to live by the guiadence of the Holy Spirit. R.I.P. Reverend Wilkerson. Your legacy lives on in the pages of these amazing book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2014

    Beautiful

    Insirational. The love of God for the human race is incredible!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2013

    It all went down like this over forty years ago and could just


    It all went down like this over forty years ago and could just as easily have been written today. David Wilkerson followed God's call to work with &quot;lost&quot; children, and the work continues today. Miracles do still occur, and Wilkerson has witnessed them. His story about the inner city gangs of New York is gripping, but the fact that his &quot;Teen Challenge&quot; centers may be found all over the world is just as gripping. An incredible story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2011

    An incredible book for all to read

    This book shows hope where there is no hope. Light where there is darkness and love where there is bitter anger and hatred. Love and God can grow in a place that has no sunshine to nourish it. As long as you have faith, you can work under any situation and succeed!!!

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  • Posted May 10, 2011

    Wonderful Read

    This is an excellent book! Compelling and cativating!

    I wish I would have read this book years ago!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 19, 2004

    Great book

    I thought this book was great. It showed me the true power of God and Prayer. If you ever doubted God read this book and you never will again

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2004

    Read This Book!!!

    I did! And I'm glad I did. It was recommended by a reviewer of 'The Last Street Fighter', which I also read---twice. Although this book is 30 years old, its message is timeless. An inspired and inspiring minister took his message to the street gangs and made a difference.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2003

    Wonderful for anyone!!

    This is a great book for just about anyone who is willing to read a book. The book is a about a preacher who steps up to the street gangs of New York and try's to change there lives. I enjoyed this book because it is a true story about someone who wants to change the world and make it a better place. I would strongly suggest this book to anyone who follows god and anyone who likes to hear about gang stories and violence.

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