Fortress Press

Preaching the Gospel of Justice: Good News in Community

Preaching the Gospel of Justice

Good News in Community

Jennifer L. Ackerman (Author)


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The call to holistic preaching has many dimensions. Are we called to preach the good news of God's grace? Advocate for justice? Is preaching worship? A prophetic act? "Yes," Jennifer Ackerman answers--to all of the above. Through personal stories, biblical examples, and concrete advice, readers will learn how to join gospel and justice in community.

Ackerman draws on her experience as a practitioner, teacher, and director of Brehm Preaching--A Lloyd John Ogilvie Initiative at Fuller Theological Seminary to provide concrete tools for readers seeking to develop their capacity for preaching with a relational focus. Ackerman helps us think about preaching through the lenses of community, justice, worship, and prophecy. The work of the church is work best done together, both within congregations and as ministers connect with fellow practitioners. Grounded in Scripture, with tangible resources and exemplar sermons, Preaching the Gospel of Justice is a hands-on tool for translating theory into practice.

  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9781506495668
  • eBook ISBN 9781506495675
  • Dimensions 5.5 x 8.5
  • Pages 160
  • Publication Date April 30, 2024


In a day when many wonder if preaching is little more than a solo performance of self meant to build a platform of personal followers, Dr. Jennifer Ackerman offers us a call, instruction, and demonstration of preaching at its most communal, transformative, collaborative, embodied, and proclamatory. It breathes the gospel. It exudes good news. It teaches skills and gives instructions that are often neglected. Best of all, it practices what it "preaches." In Psalm 85, truth, love, justice, and peace all come together in one lyrical affirmation. This book gives us a glimpse of what that kind of preaching could be, and hope that we preachers can learn to offer it. It is a celebration of what a community of proclamation and demonstration can form in both preachers and their congregants.

Rev. Dr. Tod Bolsinger, executive director, Church Leadership Institute, and author of Tempered Resilience: How Leaders Are Formed in the Crucible of Change

From her lived experience as practitioner and professor, Ackerman provides a timely call to proclaim the gospel of God made known in Jesus Christ. Translating it for the twenty-first century as "justice," Ackerman recovers the biblical testimony to the inbreaking of the kingdom of God. Preaching the Gospel of Justice gleans from Ackerman's real-life pastoral experiences, offering much-needed good news in a culture in trauma. Reminding preachers that their task requires intentionality, inquiry, and innovation that hold fast to the biblical witness to God's promises, this book exemplifies how sermons need to be practical, prophetic, and provocative.

Rev. Dr. Joy J. Moore, visiting professor of religion and Chapman-Benson Lecturer, Huntingdon College; professor of biblical preaching, Luther Seminary

Jennifer Ackerman writes as a practitioner: not in an ivory tower, but from pulpits, streets, and around coffee tables. She is a prophetic preacher who, through the Micah Group, has engaged preachers across diverse social and ethnic backgrounds living with the questions in this book: How can we preach the whole good news of God's justice without getting fired or burned out in a society that has whittled the gospel into a self-help meme? I'm a more grounded preacher for having met Jennifer and the preacher friends she introduced me to through the Micah Group. In this book, you are welcoming a preacher, a leader, and a friend who will accompany you on your journey of prophetic faithfulness.

Rev. Samuel Son, manager of diversity and reconciliation, Presbyterian Mission Agency

In this brief, accessible, and multilayered resource, Jennifer Ackerman offers an inviting menu of food for thought for preachers: solid homiletics, ideas for spiritual practices, and provocative glimpses into the preaching art from varied and insightful voices. I came away refreshed and inspired to examine and reinvigorate my approach to sharing the good news.

Rev. Wendy S. Tajima, executive presbyter, Presbytery of San Gabriel, Presbyterian Church (USA)

Whether you are new to pulpit ministry or have a well-worn path to the pulpit from throughout your ministry life, Dr. Ackerman has given the church a timely gift with this fresh and insightful text. She writes from her embodied ministerial life, as well as reaching across the width of the body of Christ to the margins to rediscover a vision for a preaching ministry centered on the gospel of justice. She gives a compelling vision of the art of homiletics coupled with some practical considerations in preparing a sermon (praxis). She rightfully includes sermons as illustrations for her vision. I highly recommend this book!

Rev. Dr. Bret M. Widman, director of Contextual and Lifelong Learning and associate professor of ministry, North Park Theological Seminary