Rescuing Jesus: How People of Color, Women, and Queer Christians are Reclaiming Evangelicalism by Deborah Jian Lee

Rescuing Jesus: How People of Color, Women, and Queer Christians are Reclaiming Evangelicalism by Deborah Jian Lee

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 An inside look at the young, diverse, and progressive Christians who are transforming the evangelical movement

 

Deborah Jian Lee left the evangelical world because she was frustrated by its conservative politics. But over the years, she noticed how evangelical culture and politics were changing--and moving in a more progressive direction. What Lee came to find is that most of what we think we know about evangelicals is wrong, or is well on its way to becoming dated.

 

In Rescuing Jesus, she ventures into the world of progressive evangelicalism, telling the stories of those at the forefront of a movement that could change the face and the substance of religion in the United States. These men and women are a young and diverse array of people--LGBTQ and straight; white, black, Asian, Hispanic, and indigenous--who are working to wrest political power away from conservatives. These young evangelicals are more likely than their elders to accept same-sex marriage, more inclined to think of "pro-life" issues as being about supporting society's disenfranchised, and more accepting of equality between men and women.

 

With empathy, journalistic rigor, and powerful storytelling, Lee unpacks the diverse and complex strands of this movement--and what it means for the rest of us. Given the clout that evangelicals still hold in national politics, Lee argues, this movement is important not only for the future of evangelicalism but also for the future of our country.

"One of the most important books I've read in years, Rescuing Jesus is a thoughtful, well-researched, and compelling page-turner that gives me hope for the future of Christianity. Lee's reporting skills really shine as she features the stories of women, people of color, and queer Christians stepping out of the margins to lead the church in new and exciting directions. I'll be recommending this book to anyone who asks me about the future of Christianity in America, and I'll be returning to it often myself for research, encouragement, and inspiration."
--Rachel Held Evans, author of Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church

 

"Deborah Jian Lee's Rescuing Jesus offers a substantial, well-written, and compelling investigative report on the stresses and strains of U.S. evangelicalism on issues of race, gender, and sexuality. The author, herself a young refugee from evangelicalism, tells a bracing story that mixes bloodcurdling accounts of (oblivious white patriarchal straight male) evangelicalism with stories of the emerging young leaders who are challenging it. This is an important contribution, carefully reported, thoughtful in its analysis, and highly recommended."
--David Gushee, Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life, Mercer University, and author of Changing Our Mind


"Lee's reporting indicts modern American evangelicalism's failure to be good news for those who aren't conservative, straight, white men. Weaving in her own story, she movingly chronicles her subjects' search for a spiritual home, and what emerges is a profoundly hopeful, deeply Christian narrative about redemption and resurrection."
--Jeff Chu, author of Does Jesus Really Love Me?