We want to follow the teachings of Jesus, but what are we supposed to do when those teachings seem too hard or too easy? Even worse, what are we supposed to do when they contradict each other?
The hard lessons of Jesus scar and scorch, challenge and demand. They call us to accountability, responsibility, and action. These words refuse to let us off the hook.
The easy sayings seem to contradict and counter the hard messages. These teachings are easily ripped from context, manipulated and distored to allow excuses for behavior Jesus denounces at other times.
Ten Things I Wished Jesus Hadn’t Said focuses on ten of these sayings; five that make it hard to be a Christian; five in seeming contradiction, that make it easy – all re-scripted in Present tense narrative and reframed for contemporary readers.
” Jesus did say some things that are hard to hear and thus ignore them, but to our loss. Joe E. Morris unwraps the tough stuff we find embedded in those jewels, treasures that excite and educate. The writing, the format – these are so well done that the reader is encouraged to look for time alone to spend with thei excellent book.”
-KENT ALLAN PHILLPOTT, Baptist minister and author of Are You Really Born Again?
Ten Things I Wish Jesus Hadn’t Said
· Joe Edd Morris has offered a gift to each of us in this honest engagement in the difficult teachings of Jesus. These teachings are hard to hear because we know they are hard to live; yet they are the source of joy and peace and power in the Christian life. I commend this book to you, to your class or group, to your church. Read it, grapple with it, embrace it, and be blessed. – Bishop Hope Morgan Ward, North Carolina Conference, United Methodist Church.
Address: Bishop Hope Morgan Ward
North Carolina Conference
United Methodist Church
700 Waterfield Ridge Place
Garner, NC 27529
· In an examination of ten of Jesus’ sayings Morris gives us a careful exploration of the texts, filled with valuable teaching moments and insights from the language and culture of Jesus’ time. He also gives us numerous insights from theology and psychology, and in discussion questions at the end of each chapter there is rich opportunity to apply the texts to our own lives. The book deals with issues that are of critical importance to our world, such as: judgment and forgiveness, wealth and poverty, greed and generosity, love and enemies, marriage and faithfulness, self-actualization and self-sacrifice, failure and recovery, war and peace, giving and receiving, and answered and unanswered prayer. Important appendices point out parallel scriptures to those explored and components of just war theory.
This is an excellent resource for preachers, Bible study teachers, study groups, and individuals who are serious about the challenges involved in contemporary discipleship.
Bishop (Retired) J. Lawrence McCleskey
The United Methodist Church
P. O. Box 164
Lake Junaluska, NC 28745
• “Jesus did say some things that are hard to hear and thus we ignore them, but to our loss. Joe Edd Morris unwraps the tough stuff we find embedded in those jewels, treasures that
excite and educate.The writing, the format – these are so well done that the reader is
encouraged to look for time alone to spend with this excellent book.
Kent Allan Phillpott, noted Baptist minister and author of
Are You Really Born Again
Address: Rev. Kent Allan Philpott
1777 Mitchell #82
Tustin, CA 92780
• “Morris offers a thorough exposition and application of challenging sayings of Jesus that make this book a helpful resource for any serious student of the Bible.”
Dr. John Armistead, noted author, artist and Baptist pastor
Address: Dr. John G. Armistead
5148 Woodlake Cove
Tupelo, MS 38801-7974
· A brilliant scholarly work that also touches the deep places of the soul. I highly recommend this book by Dr. Morris.
Peggy Webb, Award-winning author
Peggy Elaine Webb
P. O. Box 605
Mooreville, MS 38857
· Already the title arouses your curiosity. What is it that the author wishes Jesus had not said? More exciting is the uncanny way he often turns the sayings upside down to demonstrate what Jesus was really getting at. New insights emerge that give us a richer understanding of familiar gospel stories.
Theodore Runyon, Professor Emeritus, Candler School of Theology, Emory University
Dr. Ted Runyon
1800 Clairmont Lake #628
Decatur, GA 30033
· The organization of the book is simple but extremely effective. After each of the sayings, Morris provides information on the text, explains the context, elaborates on the message, and lists questions for reflection. He also gives helpful parallel scriptures for each of the sayings used. The book provides helpful insight to questions raised in the minds of all who ponder the sayings of Jesus.
Gerald Walton, an emeritus professor of English at the University of Mississippi, is the author of journal articles on language and literature and the book The University of Mississippi: a Pictorial History.
Dr. Gerald Walton
177 N. Highland #608
Memphis, TN 38111