Eugene H. Peterson
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About Eugene H. Peterson
Peterson, now retired, was for many years James M. Houston Professor of Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. He also served as founding pastor of Christ Our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland. In addition to his widely acclaimed paraphrase of the Bible, The Message (NavPress), he has written many other books.
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Books By Eugene H. Peterson
What makes The Message the best reading Bible? Discover for yourself.
- Feel the impact of a Bible translated into conversational English.
- Find passages with The Message’s unique verse-numbered paragraphs.
- See the big picture with “The Story of the Bible in Five Acts,” alongside handcrafted timelines and charts.
In The Pastor, author Eugene Peterson, translator of the multimillion-selling The Message, tells the story of how he started Christ Our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland and his gradual discovery of what it really means to be a pastor. Steering away from abstractions, Peterson challenges conventional wisdom regarding church marketing, mega pastors, and the church’s too-cozy relationship to American glitz and consumerism to present a simple, faith-based description of what being a minister means today. In the end, Peterson discovers that being a pastor boils down to “paying attention and calling attention to ‘what is going on now’ between men and women, with each other and with God.”
I decided not to get mired in the horrors or waste of war. Tomes have been devoted to this subject. I choose instead to tell of my life as a Private, a grunt if you will, and how this life impacted on me.
As a telephone lineman for the United States Marine Corps, I had the greatest opportunity to see more of the combat area than most participants. We traveled to the right flank, left flank, up front and to the rear areas to keep our telephone lines functioning and all our artillery and infantry in constant communications.
A Japanese general stated “the American troops’ ability to concentrate artillery fire on a given point was a tremendous advantage.” As an artilleryman, I am proud we provided this edge. Our front line troops on numerous occasions told me our artillery barrage had “stopped the Japs cold.” Our constant goal.
I have often been asked, “How did you cope with death as an everyday fact?” I tell of losing eight buddies on one day on Guam. We acknowledged the loss then moved on. “What is past is past.” We did not dwell on one or multiple losses. We simply moved on. Yesterday was an age away, this is today, we hope to see tomorrow. Perhaps cruel, but it retained our sanity. Those who stand and wait have not shared this burden.
Lest you think I am portraying myself as some kind of hero -- let me remind you, they never asked me if I wanted to go on these combat landings to Bougainville, Guam, and Iwo Jima.
I was not a hero, but I walked among heroes.
Scripture is another world. One we find our way into. And one that finds its way into us. Steeped in Scripture, Eugene Peterson’s faith-filled reflections open the door.
The Message Devotional Bible invites you on a journey—call it practicing resurrection, call it eating this book, or call it simply a long obedience in the same direction. From the pastor who translated the entire Bible, The Message Devotional Bible sets you on the right path—devoted not just to the Bible but to God, who, in Jesus, became flesh and blood and moved into the neighborhood.
Open the door between Scripture and your world.
From Eugene . . .
- Over 600 scriptural insights
- 52 contemplative readings
- Introductions to the books and genres of the Bible
- More than 400 reflection questions
- 9 neighborhood-themed articles
Peterson's eloquent meditation on the Revelation of St. John engages the imagination and awakens the intellect to the vitality and relevance of the last words on scripture, Christ, church, worship, evil, prayer, witness, politics, judgement, salvation, and heaven.
In The Contemplative Pastor Peterson highlights the often-overlooked essentials of ministry, first by redefining the meaning of pastor through three strengthening adjectives: unbusy, subversive, andapocalyptic. The main part of the book focuses on pastoral ministry and spiritual direction "between Sundays": these chapters begin with poetic reflections on the Beatitudes and then discuss such themes as curing souls, praying with eyes open, the language of prayer, the ministry of small talk, and sabbatical--all with engaging, illustrative anecdotes from Peterson's own experience.
The book ends with several meaning-full poems that pivot on the incarnation, the doctrine closest to pastoral work. Entitled "The Word Made Fresh," this concluding section is a felicitous finale to Peterson's discerning, down-to-earth reflections on the art of pastoring.
Since Eugene Peterson first wrote this spiritual formation classic nearly forty years ago, hundreds of thousands of Christians have been inspired by its call to deeper discipleship. As a society, we are still obsessed with the immediate; new technologies have only intensified our quest for the quick fix. But Peterson's time-tested prescription for discipleship remains the same―a long obedience in the same direction.
Following Jesus in this way requires a deepening life of prayer, and throughout history Christians have learned to pray from the Psalms. Peterson finds encouragement for today's pilgrims in the Songs of Ascents (Psalms 120-134), sung by travelers on their way to worship in Jerusalem. With his prophetic and pastoral wisdom, Peterson shows how the psalms teach us to grow in worship, service, joy, work, happiness, humility, community, and blessing.
This special commemorative edition of A Long Obedience in the Same Direction includes a new preface taken from Leif Peterson's eulogy at his father's memorial service.
Few Christian writers today bring scriptural truth into everyday life like Eugene Peterson. As the creator of The Message series, the 20-million-selling translation of the Bible in contemporary idioms, Peterson has helped overly-familiar passages to be rediscovered in surprising newness. Now he brings some of his most thought-provoking meditations into a concise and captivating collection of daily devotions.
In Working the Angles, Peterson calls the attention of his fellow pastors to three basic acts--which he sees as the three angles of a triangle--that are so critical to the pastoral ministry that they determine the shape of everything else. The acts--prayer, reading Scripture, and giving spiritual direction--are acts of attention to God in three different contexts: oneself, the community of faith, and another person. Only by being attentive to these three critical acts, says Peterson, can pastors fulfill their prime responsibility of keeping the religious community attentive to God.
Written out of the author's own experience as pastor of a "single pastor church," this well-written, provocative book will be stimulating reading for lay Christians and pastors alike.
“Calming, encouraging, and profound.”—Matt Chandler, lead pastor of The Village Church
“Jesus’ words bring us the news of an expanded world, a bright world, a full-dimensioned world, a world in which God rules, mercy is common experience, and love is the daily working agenda.”
Eugene H. Peterson (1932–2018) was one of the most beloved authors, pastors, poets, and professors of our time. While millions have read his bestselling paraphrased Bible translation, The Message, far fewer have heard his direct practical insights and wisdom about how to live well.
Eugene knew the extraordinary spirituality of ordinary life. He understood that we actually become more, not less, human as we grow to live like Jesus. And living like Jesus means living well.
On Living Well collects some of Eugene’s best never-before-published short writings to help you walk in the way of Jesus with a little more courage, passion, and hope—by offering new ways to practice generosity, community, prayer, simplicity, worship, inner peace, and so much more . . . even with the challenges of today.
This book is a rich feast for the soul, ideal as a daily spiritual touchpoint or simply to nourish a heart hungry for pastoral wisdom. It is your invitation to enter into the meaningful simplicity of life with Jesus in a world of immense beauty, real difficulty, and endless wonder.
'Sixty years ago I found myself distracted.' So begins the introduction to As Kingfishers Catch Fire. What follows is the record of the collaboration of pastor and congregation in acts of worship and a life together. What Eugene Peterson, for thirty years pastor of a Maryland church, discovered is that the pastor's life is much more than just the preaching. It is also made up of attending to the details in all the circumstances and relationships specific to a people and a place - prayers at a hospital bed, conversations with the elderly, small talk on a street corner.
This collection of spiritual writings presents Peterson's distinctive approach designed to communicate to his congregation, and the reader, 'the full counsel of God.' Seven sections containing seven teachings, each expertly crafted to stir the biblical imagination. In these teachings, Peterson walks the reader through Scripture to bring fresh insight to familiar names such as Moses, David, Isaiah, Solomon, Peter, Paul, and John of Patmos.