Ø Read Ò Prophetic Lament by Soong-Chan Rah ì This year 2018 I read two books by Dr Rah The Next Evangelicalism and Prophetic Lament Of the 100 books I read this year, Next Evangelicalism was in my top 2 Prophetic Lament was one of the most disappointing I found Lament to be a stretch It seemed to be an applying of our current circumstances back into scripture instead of vice versa I found it repetitive and lost interest 1 3 of the way through but pushed through to the end I think much of this would have been solved if he didn t feel tied to working chronologically through the book of Lamentations It would would have been far powerful to build a case from across Scripture of the need for lament However, I DO think Dr Rah s own prophetic voice is a helpful correction to American Evangelicalism and I am very thankful for him I agree The triumph and success orientation o Summary A commentary and exposition of the book of Lamentations that advocates for the restoration of the practice of lament as part of the worship of American churches, particularly majority culture evangelical churches.
Have you every experienced terrible suffering, or terrible loss, or have witnessed horrible events such as have dominated our news of late and been deeply moved to turmoil and grief that cries out to God, or even the four walls around you, how long Now, when was the last time that you did this as part of a service of worship in your church, if you regularly attend one Soong Chan Rah contends that this was an important part of the worship life of ancient Israel that has been lost in many of our churches in North America We focus on triumph and victory and success We see problems and we go around the world to solve them And we begin to believe we are the answ I absolutely agree with what Dr Rah has to say in Prophetic Lament, and I will be chewing on and wrestling with this book for a while There is so much said in the pages that needs to be said I struggled toward the second half of the book as the ongoing chronology of going through the book of Lamentations led to repetitiveness and briefly inserted asides to modern justice thoughts I found myself reflecting on the current state of American society while reading his exegesis but was thrown off every time there was a brief paragraph calling to remember something that did not seem to quite fit.
Overall, I highly recommend Prophetic Lament to all Christians as a necessary read We need to learn lament.
I ve been looking forward to this for a while both because I loved The Next Evangelicalism Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity and because of a deep interest in the subject at hand and while I did enjoy it, it wasn t necessarily what I had hoped I think my expectations had been a general exploration of the practice of lament and the theology behind it, as well as the implications that it has and the role it serves within prophetic justice work While that is certainly present, it felt in some way peripheral to the exegetical work happening here, as if the core was the commentary and analysis of Lamentations I did appreciate the way that that element provided some thoughtful framing for his ideas, but at times it also seemed to force redundancy and restrict Rah from going in a intuitive or meaningful direction My other hangup with this text was how thoroughly rooted it is w A powerful work challenging the triumphalist narrative of modern American Evangelicalism and a call to recover the lament traditions of the Bible through an exploration of Lamentations both in context and in light of modern American experience.
The author rightly exposes the overwrought emphasis on praise and triumphalism in much of modern Christianity it s all positive and successful all the time, and that s not life, and that s not even the lived experience of many Such triumphalism cannot bear the exposure of the witness of those who have suffered or been oppressed so as to sustain that triumphalism The author never denies the place or importance of praise instead, he seeks to balance praise with another prevalent form of discourse in Scripture, the lament.
To this end the
Powerful and challenging This book felt very different from a lot of the rhetoric that s out there now in Christian circles, and I m really thankful that a friend sent a copy to me out of the blue Our aim with this distinctive genre series of commentary and insight is to have one finger in the ancient Scriptures, another in the daily newspaper and another touching the heart, all the while pointing to Jesus Christ 15 Paul Louis Metzger, book series executive editor Shalom, therefore, does not eschew or diminish the role of the other or the reality of a suffering world Instead, it embraces the suffering other as an instrumental aspect of well being Shalom requires lament 21 Old Testament scholar Claus Westermann situates the Hebrew poetic material into two broad categories praise and lamen Lots to chew on A faithful, earnest reminder that owning our sin, and the consequences thereof even, or especially, generational and systemic sin is the first step toward true repentance and restoration.
I want to make this simple This book is brilliant It changed my life.
Read it And be changed also.