Conversations with Scripture


Jay Sidebotham

Mar/2015, 144 Pages, Paperback, 6 x 9

ISBN-13: 9780819229915



This book guides readers into conversation with Paul’s letter to the Romans.

The author helps readers listen to what that letter said to the people to whom it was written and to hear what it says to us today. Readers will bring their own reflections, personal concerns, and questions to the table as we let this letter challenge us with meaning—letting it read the reader.

The thesis of this book is that the letter has demonstrated transforming power to renew lives and the church through a focus on worship; a rigorous assessment of the human condition, especially the failure of human religiosity; a claim of transforming power in the ongoing life of Christ; an expansive vision of who is included in God’s life and love; a call to practical application and proclamation of the gospel.

Jay Sidebotham serves as Director of RenewalWorks, a ministry of Forward Movement. A graduate of Union Seminary, New York, and ordained to the priesthood in 1990, he has served in parishes in New York, Washington, North Carolina, Rhode Island, and Illinois. Throughout his ministry, he has had a deep commitment to making the Bible accessible to people of all ages, and cartoons have been one of the primary ways he has accomplished that.

"Central to any movement into keener appreciation of the foundational beliefs and teachings of our faith is an ongoing engagement with the writings of St. Paul, especially with his 'Letter to the Romans.' In this remarkable volume, Jay Sidebotham, who is himself both priest and teacher, gives us all the framework needed for a vigorous, nuanced, fresh reading of that work. Sidebotham’s approach is low key, pastoral, even humble at times, but the conversation it elicits is guaranteed to be as evocative and stimulating as this book is insightful."—Phyllis Tickle, author of The Great Emergence

"For Jay Sidebotham, 'holy eavesdropping' on Paul’s letter to the Romans allows contemporary Christians to hear Paul’s convictions about God’s faithfulness, call, and our response and transformation into new obedient lives in Christ. I commend this careful study, especially the thoughtful questions and discussion prompts at the end of each chapter."—Deirdre Good, Professor of New Testament, General Theological Seminary, New York City

"Whether you are reading the Letter to the Romans, St. Paul’s greatest and most demanding work, for the first time or the twentieth, I can’t imagine a more helpful guide. Jay Sidebotham takes dense and difficult concepts and language and enables them to speak simply and directly to our time. He provides context, perspective, and best of all, the sense that Paul is still speaking to us here and now—thanks to the clarity and wisdom of this gifted companion."—The Rev. Dr. Samuel T. Lloyd III, Rector, Trinity Church, Copley Square, Boston

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