THE TROUBLE WITH THE CHURCH by Helmut; John Doberstein- Trans. & Ed. Thielicke


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This volume from the widely known contemporary German theologian centers upon the status of preaching the Protestant church of today-- a focus that the title does not adequately convey. Some parts of the book are addressed, says the author, to ministers of the church, and others are meant for critics outside of the church. The contents are indicated by the chapter titles: The Plight of Preaching; Our Credibility; The Dichotomy of Christian Existence; The Pathology of Spiritual Existence; The Intellectual Demand of Preaching; The Preacher as a Helpless Soloist; The Dualism Between Preacher and Professor; The Dictatorship of the Listeners. The author finds much contemporary Continental preaching banal in its repetition of theological cliches--""Christian gobbledegook that never gets under anybody's skin,""--and is particularly critical of the separation of the preacher as a man from his tone as preacher. ""The man who bores others must also be boring himself."" Although written out of the situation of the German church, much here is applicable to American preaching and is presented in a vigorous, lively style.

Pub Date: Sept. 22nd, 1965
Publisher: Harper & Row