Workers of Wonders: A Model for Effective Religious Leadership from Scripture to Today

Workers of Wonders: A Model for Effective Religious Leadership from Scripture to Today

By: Byron L. Sherwin (author)Hardback

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Why do people follow a leader, particularly a religious leader? And why, given that Americans are still an overwhelmingly religious people, is the clergy declining in influence? Byron Sherwin argues that what is missing is the perception that religious leaders today are capable of working wonders. Sherwin leads the reader through five periods of Jewish history: the era of biblical prophets, Jesus and first-century Israel; Babylonian rabbis of the third and fourth centuries; the east European Hasidic Masters of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and twentieth century North African rabbis. In all cases, the moral authority of the leaders came primarily from popular belief in their power to work wonders for the people. Sherwin applies history to the current situation. If the clergy is to be re-empowered, to reclaim leadership and authority as holy people, they must reassert the ability to work wonders. This is a book that every member of the clergy and every religious leader should read, ponder and take to heart.

About Author

Byron L. Sherwin is Distinguished Service Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Mysticism at the Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies in Chicago. He is an internationally recognized authority on Jewish theology, ethics, and mystical traditions, and the prize-winning author of twenty-four books, including Crafting the Soul, Why Be Good?, Jewish Ethics for the Twenty-first Century, and most recently Golems Among Us published by Ivan R. Dee.


Part 1 Preface Chapter 2 Clergy Crisis Chapter 3 The Prophets of Biblical Israel Chapter 4 Rabbinic Sages and Miracle-Makers Chapter 5 The Ministry of Jesus of Nazareth Chapter 6 Babylonian Lawyer-Magicians Chapter 7 "By the Power Vested in Me": The Past Meets the Present Part 8 Glossary Part 9 Bibliography

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780742514928
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 184
  • ID: 9780742514928
  • weight: 376
  • ISBN10: 0742514927

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