Conflict Management and the Apostle Paul
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Churches often find themselves in the middle of a conflict. These conflicts can exist between people within the church, between the leaders and congregation, or even between churches themselves. Leaders often turn to Scripture for guidance in resolving these conflicts. However, the Bible does not outline or even discuss conflict management. In fact, various biblical figures–from ancient Israelite kings to New Testament apostles–all uniquely approach conflict.
Does the Bible have a “theory of conflict management”? In Conflict Management and the Apostle Paul, the authors explore how Paul approached conflicts with his close associates like Barnabas and Peter, and with his mission churches like those in Galatia and Corinth. Conflict Management and the Apostle Paul distinctively sketches how various theories of conflict management used today shed light on Paul’s own approaches to conflict while also evaluating the conflicts themselves. The authors in this volume are pastors and church workers who themselves bring their own experiences with conflict into play as they seek wisdom from the New Testament.
“Living in a world so filled with contention, both inside and outside of the church, we need help working through conflict to restore communication and connection with those around us. Conflict Management and the Apostle Paul gives us a Pauline perspective on life together. The series of articles give fresh insight to a practical blend of biblical instruction and sociological conflict transformation systems.”
–Robin D. Stoops, Executive Minister, American Baptist Churches of Nebraska
“This text takes a deep dive into how the Apostle Paul addressed conflict. Because ‘conflict’ was sometimes Paul’s middle name, the dive brings to the surface many fresh approaches to dealing with our own conflicts today . . . Paul’s conflicts are today’s conflicts. You will need this book in the days ahead.”
–C. Jeff Woods, Associate General Secretary for the American Baptist Churches, USA
“For fellow travelers seeking to find a better way through the conflicts of modern life, Conflict Management and the Apostle Paul brings the work of a dedicated cadre of pastors and lay leaders who have delved deeply into Scripture with a view to articulating the precise nature of the conflicts and disputes addressed by Paul, and the ways he confronted them. With case stories scattered throughout, this book serves as a useful companion for all who seek to better understand Paul’s teaching and how it sheds light on modern strategies that work, and those that do not.”
–Karl A. Slaikeu, author of When Push Comes to Shove: A Practical Guide to Mediating Disputes
Scot McKnight is Julius R. Mantey Professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary, and is an author of more than sixty books, including commentaries on Colossians, Philemon, and Galatians.
Greg Mamula is Associate Executive Minister, American Baptist Churches of Nebraska, Omaha.