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Plantation Jesus: Race, Faith, and a New Way Forward

4.51  ·  Rating details ·  37 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Not long ago, most white American Christians believed that Jesus blessed slavery. God wasn’t bothered by Jim Crow. Baby Jesus had white skin. Meet Plantation Jesus: a god who is comfortable with bigotry, and an idol that distorts the message of the real Savior. That false image of God is dead, right? Wrong, argue the authors of Plantation Jesus, an authoritative new book o ...more
Paperback, 196 pages
Published May 1st 2018 by Herald Press
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4.51  · 
Rating details
 ·  37 ratings  ·  18 reviews

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It is my personal opinion that we--our country, our society, our culture, and our world--are at a crossroads. We love to proclaim that we have come a long way in settling our differences over race, ethics, ethnicities, diversities, social justice, and related issues. I beg to differ.

Remembering a childhood in the 1950-1960s in the South and returning there now in the 21st century to visit children and grandchildren, I really don't sense a great change. Likewise, now at home in the Pacific NW, I
Apr 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book lays out a clear, well-researched, and convicting case for how the church has been both complicit and oftentimes an active part of perpetuating white supremacy and white nationalism. I especially appreciated how the authors draw clear lines through history from the slave trade to Jim Crow to systemic prejudice today, including around issues ranging from housing and police brutality to college athletics.

I found the multiple-author voice to be disorienting, especially in the beginning o
Allen Madding
Feb 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
a well written, eye opening book that explores our country's struggle at equality and the roadblocks that currently exist. This should be a required text for government officials and church staff members.
Thomas DeWolf
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Full disclosure... I've known the three authors of this book for several years, and have worked with them through Coming to the Table, as well as in my work as an author of books also focused on undoing racism and transforming ourselves and our world. Rick, Skot, and Andi are good friends. With that disclosure, I strongly stand by the endorsement quote below, which I offered for Plantation Jesus, and I highly recommend this powerful book to every single one of my Christian friends in particular. ...more
Jul 06, 2018 rated it really liked it

Skot Welch and Rick Wilson met in the late 1990’s when they were both members of a large Christian church in Grand Rapids, MI. They later joined another large church desired to be “multi-ethnic” but was over 99% white. Under the leadership of a visionary pastor the church started on a path to become more authentically multi-ethnic. Skot and Rick were part of a group called “Mosaic” whose job it was to facilitate the church’s transition to this new multi-ethnic status. However, their efforts were
Fran Sutton-Williams
Feb 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I am not a Christian. As an African American woman over 65, I stopped going to a church that did not help me heal the wounds of slavery/racism or any other "ism". So, when a friend recommended this book, I was reluctant to read it. After all, it was about Jesus and we had parted company long ago. Out of deference to my friend, I decided to read the first chapter and I was blown away. This book asked the hard questions and gave the hard facts about racism in America and said, unequivocally that J ...more
May 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Such a powerful and challenging book. Recommended reading for white people of faith who seek to participate in restoration and reconciliation with our black brothers and sisters. It made me squirm and shift in my seat and mourn the impact white supremacy has had on our nation and its people. I would love to read it with a group and do the activities included at the end.

A much-needed resource for our day.
Jody Luck
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Well written and engaging, timely and relevant, this book is a must-read for anyone who sees the racial problems we face currently. It is even more of a must-read for those who still question what problems, if any, still exist.
Beginning with a definition of “Plantation Jesus”, an idol we have created in our own (white) image, the authors skillfully cover the historical aspects of religiously acceptable racism. The focus on improper exegesis that allows us to arrive here is clear to a layperson
Joel Mitchell
Apr 09, 2018 rated it liked it
This book addresses a genuine problem in white American Evangelicalism: an attitude that says (though usually not in so many words) “serious racism doesn’t really exist anymore, you lazy, over-sensitive whiners.” However, for a book with “a new way forward” in the title, it offers relatively little practical help in dealing with the issue (just some “how do you think you can fix this?” questions in the discussion exercises).

The book as whole focuses almost exclusively on getting white Christians
Addressed to white American Evangelical Christians (a group I don’t belong to), the book catalogues how Christianity was used to bolster slavery and continues to bolster white privilege. For instance, the persons in the Bible are pictured as Northern Europeans rather than the Middle Eastern people they were, and this is particularly true of the many “portraits”of Jesus found in churches. When I visited the history of scripture diarama exhibits off Temple Square in Salt Lake City, for example, I ...more
John Richards
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Nice, quick read on the ugly history of appropriating the Christian story in the “peculiar institution” of slavery. I especially appreciated the Ten Roadblocks to Real Conversations chapter, which could serve as a road map for conversations surrounding race in America in 2018.

I also appreciated how the authors provided examples of churches doing the real heart-level work of encountering the real Jesus as it pertains to race. Helpful read. Would commend it to anyone interested in seeing how the
Maryanne P
Really wanted to read this book!

Wanted to read this book to open a dialog. The author is excellent at laying out the facts of overt and hidden white privilege. The tone of the book is not what I was hoping for for a reconciliation group in a mosaic congregation. The author is angry, wants to accuse and blame , get some kind of revenge or restitution - I can’t really understand what he wants. He certainly does not want to open a dialog and work toward peace and togetherness in the church
Steven May
Sep 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Slot Welch and Rick Wilson compare the values and ministry of those who follow the Jesus of cultural past to following the Jesus of the New Testament. They challenge the culture of white supremacy that exists in our churches and values. A book each person that cares about reconciliation of racial issue must read.
Ricky Evans
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thought provoking book on an issue that is still plaguing America. Really asks questions that give you pause for thought
Nancy Wolfe
Jul 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This thoughtful book is written with a sharp pencil and no apologies. And it doesn't let us "just get over it" - in the very best way.
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
WOW - I can't think of anyone that should not read this book - eye opening and encouraging/challenging. Definitely worth the read.
Raelee Carpenter
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Not an easy read, but an important one. I recommend it to every white Christian.
Rich Garon
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Sep 18, 2018
Skot Welch
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Feb 13, 2018
Dax Palmer
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Sep 03, 2018
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May 30, 2018
Gary Lifsey
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Jul 08, 2018
Alyson B
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Dec 31, 2018
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Oct 13, 2018
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Nov 02, 2018
Julie Woods
rated it it was amazing
Aug 15, 2018
Allison Soler
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Jul 21, 2018
Brenda Yoder
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is excellent in pointing out the intersection of faith, racism, and American culture. It’s challenging yet practical. I loved the resources and activities at the end of the book. A great book for discussion.
Joanna Hadley-evans
rated it it was amazing
Jul 24, 2018
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Mar 31, 2018
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