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James H. Cone ↠ 4 Download

The Cross and the Lynching Tree Download » 104 ↠ A landmark in the conversation about race and religion in America They put him to death by hanging him on a tree Acts 1039 The cross and the lynching tree are the two most emotionally charged symbols in the history of the African American community In this powerful new work theologian A landmark in the conversation about race and religion in America They put him to death by hanging him on a tree Acts 1039 The cross and the lynching tree are the two most emotionally charged symbols in the history of the African American community In this powerful new work theologian James H Cone explores these symbols and their interconnection in the history and souls of black folk Both the cross and the lynching tree represent the worst in human beings and at the same time a thirst for life that. As one of the Associate Pastors at Rolling Hills Baptist Church in Fayetteville Arkansas one of my responsibilities was the bulletin boards in the hallways I don't know that anyone gave me that job so much as I took it on I really enjoyed putting up various kinds of bulletin boards I rarely was only informational Often I put up something around a theme of the season I did one after 911 with U2 songs for instance My favourite bulletin board I designed and one I hung up also at Royal Lane Baptist Church in Dallas Texas where I also took over bulletin boards was Images of Crucifixion I would place a white in the middle of the bulletin board maybe influenced by Chagall Then around it I hung full color pictures and texts The pictures included famous artistic renderings of the crucifixion but also many modern ones I also included an image of a black man being lynchedThe texts were song lyrics and poems Some of the traditional Good Friday hymns were included and poems directly addressing the cross I also hung some critical modern poems Plus I included Strange Fruit And American Triangle the song that Elton John recorded about Matthew Shepherd's murderIn 2006 when I was organizing the Good Friday service at Cathedral of Hope I drew on this bulletin board and instead of the normal Tenebrae readings read from these selected poems including Strange Fruit and American TriangleTo me the connections between lynching and the crucifixion were always obvious I don't know that any book ever gave me that idea I created that bulletin board before I had read James Cone's God of the Oppressed or anything similarSimply put The Cross and the Lynching Tree is the powerful book of the cross that I have ever read And lately I've been reading a lot of books on the cross and atonement as I prepare for a class we will have on that topic later this year at First CentralIt is at once a stunning and a damning book At times I wanted to repent for being white But it is also inspiring of hope and reconciliationIt is a brief book that succintly discusses the connection between the cross and the lynching tree and through that the power of the cross in the black religious experience The first chapter discusses that black experienceThe second chapter is a damning discussion of Reinhold Niebuhr standing in for white liberal theologians who have ignored the lynching tree and the role of black experience in developing their American theologies Cone likes Niebuhr and has nice things to say about him but he also exposes his blinders Niebuhr was the great Christian ethicist of his day and he never addressed lynching despite its on going prevalence and the orchestrated campaigns against itThe next chapter is an interpretation of the life of Martin Luther King Jr as an exploration of the cross This chapter is reminiscent of the chapter on King in James McClendon's Biography as Theology Then Cone turns to the black literary tradition and reads the works of Countee Cullen W E B DuBois Langston Hughes and others as theological source material This is the best chapter in the book and its own amazing contribution to the history of American theologyThe final full chapter explores the experience of black women and entertains the critiue of the cross posed by womanist theologians particularly Delores Williams I liked this chapter and Cone's narration of the history of black women such as Fannie Lou Hamer I do think that the critiue of Williams and others deserved a developed response however The thrust of his response is that in the black religious experience the cross is not experienced as a justification for suffering but as an empowerment to fight for one's liberation That seems a little too simpleThe epilogue wraps ups the book and Cone's entire theological career It seems that this will be his last book though he does not say it In this epilogue he opens up some possibilities to interpreting the cross that I have not uite encountered before I will treat of them in a separate postI have one and only one critiue of the book In chapter three he writes about Mamie Till Bradley and her powerful confrontational response to white supremacy when her son Emmett Till was lynched I immediately thought of Judy Shepherd and her powerful response to homophobia after Matthew's death In the book Cone mentions lynchings of non blacks but he never mentions the lynchings of ueer persons I know that generally these lynchings do not occur as major public spectacles and are definitely against the law ualities which make them different But they do exist in their own fashion and should invite their own theological reflection Cone himself writes that we must have the imagination necessary to relate the message of the cross to one's own social reality He is very negative of Niebuhr and others for their failuresWhich is all the reason I was surprised by his silence on ueer lynchings I know one purpose of this book was to offer hope and healing for American's racism but doesn't this recent and on going form of lynching deserve at least something Is Cone then guilty of a similar failure to Niebuhr How powerful an impact Cone could have as the leading black theologian to make that connection and confront the homophobia that entraps many African Americans

Summary Ì PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ↠ James H. Cone

Refuses to let the worst determine our final meaning While the lynching tree symbolized white power and black death the cross symbolizes divine power and black life God overcoming the power of sin and death For African Americans the image of Jesus hung on a tree to die powerfully grounded their faith that God was with them even in the suffering of the lynching era In a work that spans social history theology and cultural studies Cone explores the message of the spirituals and the power of the blue. To say that James Cone an I are theologically far apart would be a fairly significant understatement I am a conservative evangelical while he is one of the primary voices behind black liberation theology standing well within the liberal theological tradition Despite those differences I was very excited to read this book and after finishing it am very glad that I did The reason for that is simple I came to this book not to critiue Cone's answers I knew going in we would largely disagree but to better understand his perspective and the uestions he's asking I am convinced that the answer to racism and the path to healing racial wounds lies not in sociology or politics but in the Gospel If we're to actually solve those problems they must be solved theologically Cone points out that too often white culture looks at things like lynching and want to shut them away in the past What's done is done and there's no value in bringing it up again Cone argues that we must not do that Those experiences must be remembered and given voice He's right The hope of the Gospel doesn't come by sweeping sin and pain under the rug It comes by confronting it and allowing God to change us through it The mistake Cone makes is in his conclusions He chooses experience not the Word of God as his theological starting point which creates a great many problems Along the way he deliberately rejects much of the western theological tradition again causing many problems Although my goal isn't to critiue Cone these errors need to be pointed out at least briefly This is a valuable book but it's one that needs to be read with a heavy dose of discernment The uestions Cone raises are invaluable and if we ever want to have a true expression of the Gospel that brings all people together into God's Covenant Family then those uestions need to be heard For that reason alone this book needs to be read It's conclusions are highly problematic but its perspective is one that's gone unheard for far too long

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The Cross and the Lynching TreeS; the passion and of Emmet Till and the engaged vision of Martin Luther King Jr; he invokes the spirits of Billie Holliday and Langston Hughes Fannie Lou Hamer and Ida B Well and the witness of black artists writers preachers and fighters for justice And he remembers the victims especially the 5000 who perished during the lynching period Through their witness he contemplates the greatest challenge of any Christian theology to explain how life can be made meaningful in the face of death and injusti. In 1964 I was a kid a couple of years away from voting age a son of my father and like him a Republican I was no Bircher but I remember my thrill when Barry Goldwater told the nation and the world that Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice I was old enough to know what that single sentence meant to hard line right wingers whose fear of commies and leftists pushed them to the extremes Goldwater legitimized or tried to with that widely anticipated and much beloved line I remember watching the speech on our old black and white Zenith maybe my first real interest in politics on a national scale Like my dad I thought Goldwater a prophet and Martin Luther King a communist a man who stirred up all kinds of social discord even violence throughout the nationWhat did I know Not much but I was confident about defending American libertyI have few memories of the 1964 Democratic Convention I'm guessing the Zenith wasn't on not because my parents would have objected but because there simply wasn't any interest I'm sure the speakers who rose to the dais other than Goldwater would have been disappointing to them and to meSo I have no memories whatsoever of a short speech given by a stocky African American woman named Fannie Lou Hamer a woman who was pleading the case of a delegation of Mississippians most of them black asking for voting credentials at that convention Hamer had a sixth grade education and no because her hands were needed in the cotton fields where her family tried to make a life from sharecropping She'd started picking cotton when she was six years oldWhen Fannie Lou Hamer sat and told the 1964 Democratic Convention what she'd suffered a horrible beating while jailed in Winona Mississippi on some ridiculous charge delegates were stunned President Lyndon Baines Johnson who had occupied the office for less than a year at that point and who down the road distinguished himself boldly and wonderfully for the cause of civil rights in this country was scared to death he'd lose the votes of the Dixiecrats to the Republicans if they heard Hamer's indictment of Southern racism Johnson was so scared he called the networks to interrupt the Ms Hamer's testimony President Johnson told them he was having an important unscheduled news conference The networks assumed that he was about to name his nomination for Vice President so just like that they turned out the lights on Fannie Lou Hamer and starting broadcasting from the Oval Office where LBJ simply told the nation it was at that moment nine months since the death of President Kennedy That's it That was the whole storyThere was no news What there was was subterfuge The President successfully kept Fannie Lou Hamer's testimony from gaining a national audience That happened That actually happenedSo much about that story is out and out incredible First Hamer herself a woman who'd spent her life in cotton fields trying to make a life for her children a woman who wanted to vote and got beaten horribly for nothing than wanting rights that were hers Hamer's story turns your stomach and wrenches your heart Then the entire situation Johnson the civil rights advocate worried about an election should white Southerners start going over to the other side and supporting Goldwater; Johnson who did so much for African Americans shutting out the lights on Ms Hamer's incredible speechAnd then the press who left the convention floor and flocked to the Oval Office to cover the President like so many lemmings But then again however the press who smelled something like fake news a half century ago and went back over the ground they'd just trod in an effort to locate the source of the smell they couldn't get out of their system Eventually a free press found it discovered the whole blasted story I never knew any of that until I read James H Cone's The Cross and the Lynching Tree a reprimand an indictment against Christian America Cone's book is a Jeremiad that is just plain wilting in every way possible culturally morally spiritually to the white folks at whom he aims most specifically those who confess the name of Jesus Cone makes you weep makes you wonder where you were in 1964 where you were for a half century or of terrifying bloodletting when white folks many of them church going folks pulled out ropes from their shed and hung black men and some black women for one purpose only to keep ns in their placeIf you're a white man or woman if you're a believer especially The Cross and the Lynching Tree will teach you all kinds of things you didn't know things you can't help but wonder how you missed It will make you wonder where you've been