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With My Own Eyes by Bo Giertz - A Review

With My Own Eyes by Bo Giertz – A Review

…ressed head and heart with equal clarity, communicating the hilarity of the Gospel with a sharpness that disarms its readers wherever they may stand, even jaded hard cases like yours truly. The late Swedish pastor and bishop Bo Giertz deserves mention on any such list, right alongside luminaries like C.S. Lewis or Mockingbird favorite Robert Capon. Giertz was long lived and hugely prolific as a writer, and has certainly received a bit of…

Excerpt from Bo Giertz's "Hammer of God"

Excerpt from Bo Giertz’s "Hammer of God"

…20;As the Twentieth Century was coming to an end, Kyrkans Tidning, the official weekly newspaper of the Church of Sweden asked its readers, ‘Who made the greatest impact on the church in Sweden during the 1900s?’ Bo Giertz got more votes than anyone else!” “In fact, Giertz may be compared with his famous contemporaries, C. S. Lewis and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.” Suffice it to say that this guy has an altogether different…

A New Bo Giertz Must Have Resource: Then Fell the Lord's Fire

A New Bo Giertz Must Have Resource: Then Fell the Lord’s Fire

…ount, he is not only describing an experience that lies at the heart of our work here through Mockingbird, but doing so in reference to one of our favorite books—The Hammer of God—by the late (great) Swedish Lutheran Bishop, Bo Giertz. This name will not be unfamiliar to longtime Mockingbird readers, because his work is often on the first list of books we recommend when people who have had a similar “Copernican revolution” ask “what do I read…

The Hammer of God - Bo Giertz

The Hammer of God – Bo Giertz

I’ve just finished re-reading The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz, who was the Swedish Lutheran Bishop of Gothenburg. It is a novel about three curates who come to grips with God’s grace through tremendous failure, and needless to say, I highly recommend it. The second story may be my favorite, about a young curate named Fridfeldt who, after being converted by a pietistic revival, is sent to a small country church to serve under a very old,…

Top 10 Things I Wanted to Blog about in 2013 but Was Too Lazy

Top 10 Things I Wanted to Blog about in 2013 but Was Too Lazy

…ein variety. This year one of my favorites was Extra Yarn, which I recommend reading. I found this video version of the tale for our purposes, but it doesn’t quite do justice to the book.   5) The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz. My favorite grownup book that I read this year. We’ve covered it before, but not for a while. The Hammer of God is really a timeless classic. If you haven’t read it, consider making it your next piece…

Slightly Expanded And Significantly More Organized Conference Book Table List

Slightly Expanded And Significantly More Organized Conference Book Table List

Here’s the full list plus a couple of relevant additions, linked to sites where they can be purchased. Although everything comes highly recommended, this is by no means meant to be a definitive list (stay tuned…). For the sake of newcomers we have divided the non-fiction into three itunes-inspired categories: Basics, Next Steps and Deep Cuts. In other words, the books are organized according to accessibility rather than importance….

He Saved Others; He Cannot Save Himself - Bo Giertz on Mark 15:31

He Saved Others; He Cannot Save Himself – Bo Giertz on Mark 15:31

One of the most powerful devotions on this Good Friday verse I’ve ever come across, taken from the Swedish bishop’s invaluable To Live with Christ: Once again, the mockers expressed one of the most profound truths about Jesus. He saved others. Without thinking about it, they affirmed then and for all posterity that it really was true: Jesus “went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil”…

2015 NYC Conference Book Table

2015 NYC Conference Book Table

…, Judgment: Paradox, Outrage, and Vindication in the Parables of Jesus Robert Farrar Capon, The Supper of the Lamb Gerhard Forde, On Being a Theologian of the Cross: Reflections on Luther’s Heidelberg Disputation, 1518 Bo Giertz, Hammer of God David Hawkins, The Useful Sinner Soon and very soon! John D. Koch and Todd Brewer, Comfortable Words: Essays in Honor of Paul F. M. Zahl Sally Lloyd-Jones, The Jesus Storybook Bible Martin Luther,…

2014 NYC Book Table / Reading List

Thanks so much to volunteers, speakers, and attendants of our 2014 NYC Conference! Recordings and videos should be coming soon, but for now, here’s our conference book table, which doubles as a recommended reading list from Mbird. Titles with asterisks are either new or new to us:


photo 2-W.H. Auden, The Dyer’s Hand and Other Essays
-Saul Bellow, Henderson the Rain King (Penguin Classics)*
-T.S. Eliot, The Cocktail Party
-George Herbert, Herbert Poems
-Mary Karr, Lit: A Memoir (P.S.)
-Mary Karr, Sinners Welcome: Poems
-C.S. Lewis, Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold
-Sally Lloyd-Jones, Poor Doreen: A Fishy Tale*
-Sally Lloyd-Jones, Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing
-Sally Lloyd-Jones, Song of the Stars: A Christmas Story
-Reynolds Price, A Whole New Life: An Illness and a Healing
-J.D. Salinger, Franny and Zooey
-Oscar Wilde, De Profundis: The Ballad of Reading Gaol and Other Writings
-Thornton Wilder, Theophilus North: A Novel
-Christian Wiman, Every Riven Thing: Poems


-Oswald Bayer, Martin Luther’s Theology: A Contemporary Interpretation
-Todd Brewer and David Zahl, The Gospel According to Pixar
-Robert Farrar Capon, Between Noon and Three: Romance, Law, and the Outrage of Grace
-Robert Farrar Capon, Kingdom, Grace, Judgment: Paradox, Outrage, and Vindication in the Parables of Jesus
-Gerhard Ebeling, Luther: An Introduction to His Thought
-Gerhard Forde, On Being a Theologian of the Cross: Reflections on Luther’s Heidelberg Disputation, 1518 (Theology)
-Gerhard Forde, Where God Meets Man
-Bo Giertz, Hammer of God
-John D. Koch and Todd Brewer, Comfortable Words: Essays in Honor of Paul F. M. Zahl*
-Martin Luther, Commentary on Galatians (Luther Classic Commentaries)
-Martin Luther, On the Bondage of the Will
-Brennan Manning, All Is Grace: A Ragamuffin Memoir

photo 3 (1)
-William McDavid, Eden and Afterward: A Mockingbird Guide to Genesis*
-Jim McNeely, The Romance of Grace
-Sean Norris, Judgment and Love
-Ashley Null, Thomas Cranmer’s Doctrine of Repentance: Renewing the Power to Love
-Ethan Richardson, This American Gospel: Public Radio Parables and the Grace of God
-Ethan Richardson and Sean Norris, The Mockingbird Devotional: Good News for Today (and Every Day)
-Ethan Richardson, The Mockingbird (Magazine)*
-Francis Spufford, Unapologetic: Why, Despite Everything, Christianity Can Still Make Surprising Emotional Sense
-Tullian Tchividjian, Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free
-Tullian Tchividjian, One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World
-Christian Wiman, My Bright Abyss: Meditation of a Modern Believer
-Paul F.M. Zahl, Grace in Addiction: The Good News of Alcoholics Anonymous for Everybody
-Paul F.M. Zahl, The Merciful Impasse
-Paul F.M. Zahl, PZ’s Panopticon: An Off-the-Wall Guide to World Religion*
-Paul F.M. Zahl, Grace in Practice: A Theology of Everyday Life
-Paul F.M. Zahl, Who Will Deliver Us?: The Present Power of the Death of Christ

photo 4

-Jonathan Haidt, The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom
-Jonathan Haidt, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion (Vintage)
-Tim Kreider, We Learn Nothing: Essays*
-Dorothy Martyn, Beyond Deserving: Children, Parents, and Responsibility Revisited
-Walker Percy, Signposts in a Strange Land: Essays
-Adam Phillips, Missing Out: In Praise of the Unlived Life*
-Marilynne Robinson, The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought
-Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts


Sam Bush and Kathryn Caine, Love and Mercy*
High Street Hymns, High Street Hymns
High Street Hymns, Love Shall Be Our Token

Rusty Hearts

Rusty Hearts

…derstand, nor give one’s heart to him. The heart is a rusty old can on a junk heap. A fine birthday gift, indeed! But a wonderful Lord passes by, and has mercy on the wretched tin can, sticks his walking cane through it, and rescues it from the junk pile and takes it home with him. That is how it is” -The Rector The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz, p. 123…

James Nestingen on Faith vs. Piety

James Nestingen on Faith vs. Piety

Mockingbird friend Matt McCormick recently transcribed an incredible excerpt of a sermon by James Nestingen. Amazing stuff: You can always hear the difference between Faith and Piety in the verbs. Piety says, “I did this. I’ll do that.” Faith says, “He does this. He’ll do that.” Piety says, “You know – I’ve committed my life to Christ.” Faith says, “I can do all things through…

A Mockingbird Gift Guide (2015 Edition)

A Mockingbird Gift Guide (2015 Edition)

…Charleston Rice Beads or one of these beauties For everyone on your social media feeds who overdoes it (and those who judge them for it): Mary Karr’s The Art of Memoir Feel free to judge this one by its cover. For the Bo Giertz fan who reminds you a bit of Drax in Guardians of the Galaxy: Miller Cast Products’ Solid Brass Claw Hammer For those simply living for Dec 18th but too overwhelmed to sort through all the merchandising:…