Shaking the System: What I Learned from the Great American Reform Movements

Shaking the System: What I Learned from the Great American Reform Movements

by Tim Stafford


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780830834365
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
Publication date: 09/28/2007
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Tim Stafford is a senior writer for Christianity Today. Among his many books are Knowing the Face of God; As Our Years Increase; The Student Bible (with Philip Yancey); Love, Sex and the Whole Person; a trilogy of historical fiction (The Stamp of Glory; Sisters; The Law of Love), and Never Mind the Joneses. He and his wife, Popie, live in Santa Rosa, California.

Table of Contents

How Do We Change the World?     7
Starting with Truth     27
Meeting Resistance     43
Pressure Tactics     59
Staying Power     81
The Seduction of Violence     105
Party Politics and the Prophetic Alternative     125
Applying Political Pressure     141
Who Is an Activist?     163
Acknowledgments     172
Notes     173

What People are Saying About This

Jim Wallis

"Activists (especially Christian activists) are too often unaware of our own history. Tim Stafford tells us that history--from the abolition of slavery to women's suffrage to civil rights--and draws from it the important lessons for today. This is an important handbook for a new generation, and a welcome refresher for those who have been in the struggle for years. He closes with the most important reminder--that what ultimately calls us into activism is the kingdom of God breaking into our world. We are motivated not by partisan politics but by the message of Jesus. I heartily recommend Shaking the System to all those who seek both a deeper faithfulness and a better world."
Jim Wallis, author of God's Politics and president, Sojourners

Ronald J. Sider

"Insightful, probing reflection on Christian activist struggles to change America. Wisely cautionary, firmly encouraging. A must-read for all activists who want to change the world."
Ronald J. Sider, president, Evangelicals for Social Action

John Perkins

"Shaking the System is a brilliant analysis of Christian attempts at needed social reforms, heavily focused on the abolitionist and civil rights movements. This is not a romantic or idealistic analysis, but it is brutally realistic about the pitfalls and problems as well as the limited successes of these movements. Very few white evangelicals write with the insight and wisdom of Stafford."
John Perkins, John Perkins Foundation

Philip Yancey

As Christians increasingly join in the cause of social justice, it's a good time to remember that people of faith have always joined—and often led—great reform movements. Tim Stafford helps us pause, reflect and learn from both the wisdom and folly of that colorful past.

Charles Marsh

"It is deeply gratifying to see one of contemporary evangelicalism's most eloquent and respected thinkers plumb the wisdom of the great reform movements of American history. Shaking the System is a passionate and riveting account of Christian faith in action. Tim Stafford tells stories that inspire acts of courage and compassion, and at the same time, he shows us why courage and compassion must be grounded in costly discipleship to Jesus Christ. This book has the power to renew Christian social witness in our time."
Charles Marsh, author of The Beloved Community and director of the Project on Lived Theology, University of Virginia

Russell Jeung

"Many of America's great social movements--abolition, temperance, women's suffrage, civil rights--had their roots in the Christian faith. In his thoughtful and eminently practical analysis of these movements, Tim Stafford counsels would-be Christian activists in how to be 'as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.' I especially appreciate his take on the role of truth for activists who seek to be both passionate and durable. Although to most of our postmodern sensibilities truth has been relativized to be nonconsequential, Stafford reminds us that the truth of God's kingdom insists on activism and social change. Shaking the System is an 'ebenezer,' recounting how God has worked redemptively in America's past, and how God can work again today."
Russell Jeung, associate professor of Asian American studies, San Francisco State University, author and Asian American Christian activist

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