Ministering in Honor-Shame Cultures: Biblical Foundations and Practical Essentials
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Ministering in Honor-Shame Cultures: Biblical Foundations and Practical Essentials

IVP Academic / 2016 / Paperback

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Stock No: WW851461


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Many a Westerner has experienced the missed cues and social bruises that come with learning that another culture runs on an honor-shame operating system. When Western individualism and its introspective conscience fails to engage cultural gears, how can we shift and navigate this alternate code? And might we even learn to see and speak the gospel differently if we did?

In Jayson Georges and Mark Baker's Ministering in Honor-Shame Cultures, readers are given assistance in decoding the cultural script of honor and shame, as well as in reading the Bible anew through the lens of honor and shame, often with startling turns. Drawing from scholarly discussions on honor and shame from multiple sources, including biblical studies, theology, anthropology, and intercultural studies, Georges and Baker will provide missionaries and local leaders alike with a well-rounded, practical, and insightful guide to Christian ministry in honor-shame contexts, complete with apt stories, illuminating insights and ministry-tested wisdom.

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Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 272
Vendor: IVP Academic
Publication Date: 2016
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.00 (inches)
ISBN: 0830851461
ISBN-13: 9780830851461

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Author Bio

Jayson Georges (MDiv, Talbot) lived in Central Asia for nine years doing church planting and micro-enterprise development. He is the author of , founder/editor of HonorShame.com and creator of The Culture Test. He serves as missiologist-in-residence at an evangelical organization, developing tools and training for Christians working in honor-shame contexts. Mark D. Baker (PhD, Duke University) is professor of mission and theology at Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary in Fresno, California. He served as a missionary in Honduras for ten years and has written a number of books in English and Spanish.

Editorial Reviews

"Georges and Baker have taken the seeds of previous work on honor and shame in the environment of the biblical world and in modern cultures and cultivated them into fruitful insights and guidance in the areas of theology, crosscultural engagement and, especially, missions. They provide a culturally sensitive reading of Scripture and of modern non-Western situations, significantly advancing the question of how awareness of this dimension of the texts and our global community can improve our interactions with people living from a decidedly different axis of values and in our thinking about the contextualization of the gospel."  —David A. deSilva, Ashland Theological Seminary, Trustees Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek

"Building responsibly on biblical and anthropological foundations for understanding honor and shame cultures, the authors offer practical reflections on how to engage honor-shame societies in the work of intercultural mission. This book will especially be of help to Christian workers from the West serving among Majority World peoples."  —Edward L. Smither, dean, associate professor of intercultural studies, director, Zwemer Center, College of Intercultural Studies, Columbia International University

"Although Jayson Georges has written on the important topic of honor-shame in the past, this book, coauthored with Mark Baker, takes an understanding of honor-shame dynamics to another level. Every message bearer working in non-Western cultures needs to read and apply the insights and principles of this book if they are to avoid the typical cultural blunders too often committed by too many. Within are crucial insights for effective crosscultural ministry." —Marvin J. Newell, senior VP, Missio Nexus, author of Crossing Cultures in Scripture

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  1. Andy Le Peau
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A Whole Different Way of Thinking about the Bible and the World
    June 6, 2017
    Andy Le Peau
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Good news for all of us racked by guilt as a result of being raised Jewish, Catholic or Protestant! There is a whole different way to feel bad about yourself, and it is called honor-shame.

    As part of the individualist Western culture, we are used to feeling guilty when we break a rule even if no one knows about it. But thats been losing its force in recent years. Dont lose hope, however. We have another option. We can be more collective in our thinking, like most of the rest of the world. Shame can then be used to exclude us or make us feel badly about ourselves when we fail to meet group standards.

    Remarkably, honor-shame groups have been hiding among us in plain sight all along. The military (think honor and code), street gangs (where to be disrespected can be cause for violence), sports teams (think awards and respecting the game) and small towns (which use gossip to curb certain behaviors) all embody an honor-shame culture.

    Learning the language of honor-shame can help us, according to Georges and Baker, in two other ways. First, it can help those who work in other cultures. The authors offer a wide variety of fascinating stories of mistakes and successes theyve had in navigating this way of life from Nepal to the Philippines to Fresno.

    Second, it can help us read the Bible with greater understanding because it is saturated with honor-shame thinking. Words and phrases like honor, name, praise, glory, renown, put to shame, disgrace abound in Scripture. From Cains distress over Abel to the way issues of honor-shame permeate Jesus parable of the father and two sons, from the crucifixion to the resurrectionthis way of thinking brings fresh light and deeper insight into stories and concepts we thought we already knew well.

    Neither honor-shame nor guilt-innocence is superior to the other, like being right- or left-handed. Both can be valuable and both can be misused. But if we are able to see when they are at work and how they operate differently, we may be beneficiaries of great honor and a clear conscience.
  2. Jimmy Reagan
    Leesville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    An Incredible Book!
    October 8, 2016
    Jimmy Reagan
    Leesville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This book is profound on many levels. For me personally, I cant remember when I last read a book that made me feel like I didnt know a thing about the subject before I read it as was the case here. Its not that I hadnt traveled or been in mission work in other cultures, but that I didnt know specifically why those other cultures even seemed to think differently than my own. My culture, as is so well described in this volume, is based on guilt whereas many other cultures think more with an honor-shame mindset. Even more surprising, my Western culture is by far in the minority in our world.

    The authors, Jayson Georges and Mark Baker, are well qualified to write on this subject and I particularly appreciated how they shared their own trial and error while serving in other parts of the world to gain some of their knowledge the hard way.

    Though they tackled three distinct areasdeep analysis of what the honor-shame culture is, a careful explanation of how it fits in with biblical theology, and how to take this understanding and practically minister to those who view the world through an honor-shame lensthey amazingly prove themselves adept in all three disciplines.

    In the first area they really helped you get into the mind of someone who thinks in terms of honor-shame and see why it makes as much sense to them as our more legal outlook does to us. In the second, while there is a forgiveness/legal/guilt outlook in Scripture, there is clear honor/shame outlooks as well. We may have been overlooking key theology here. Finally, the practical side is amazing. The chapter on evangelism is worth the price of the whole book.

    This book should be required reading for every missionary or persons working with different cultures. It might make the difference in effectiveness more than you realize. For that matter, every Christian should read it both for its theology and ministry training. This book is home run all the way!

    I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255.
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