Welcome to CBE’s Library

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Many know the story of Queen Esther from the Bible. However, often our own culture and struggles can lead us to “discover” lessons that are not part of the text, or miss important details that are. Often in churches, Esther becomes obscured to the point where this brave woman who was mightily used by God becomes passively subject to the decisions of men. For example, a marriage book released recently by a popular pastor and his wife used the story of Esther to promote obedience to one’s husband, contrasting disobedient Queen Vashti with a “submissive” Esther. Is submission to one’s husband truly the lesson of this narrative?

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“Mr. President, how long must women wait for liberty?”

This was the question stretched across banners in front of the White House, distributed on pamphlets, and spoken all over the country in the 1910s. Inez Milholland, an icon of the women’s suffrage movement, first uttered them. They were her last words before she collapsed, and soon died, while campaigning for women’s suffrage through the western United States. This is also the question that pervaded my mind as I watched the film Iron Jawed Angels.

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In the first recorded crime in the Bible, brother murders brother: Cain slays Abel out of jealousy. The pages of scripture that follow are filled with stories of difficult, often destructive relationships between siblings: Isaac and Ishmael, Esau and Jacob, Rachel and Leah, Joseph and his brothers. Certainly the most sanguinary and cold-blooded display of fratricide occurs in the book of Judges, when Abimelech massacres his seventy brothers! From the beginning of human history, one of the closest of family relationships is fraught with the dangers of alienation and violence.

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Our interactions with others, including Christians with whom we disagree, should display Christlikeness above all else.

 

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Are you a pastor or spiritual leader who wants to help and not hurt? Is your church ready to study the link between theology and domestic violence? Here are fifteen resources on domestic violence. 

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Are you new to egalitarianism or rethinking your assumptions and beliefs about gender roles, authority, feminism, and the Bible? Or do you know someone who is open to reexamining these issues?

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If you have time; you like to set lofty summer reading goals; and you’re egalitarian, here’s your 2018 dream list.

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It can feel like an especially difficult task to identify places where women shaped history. But it’s only difficult because we’re biased against women’s stories and accomplishments, preferring to study and celebrate the historical influence of men. In other words, it's not that women were absent from history; it's that we haven't learned how to see them. 

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If we are serious about widening our historical narrative, addressing racial bias, and celebrating the history of African Americans in the US, our reading lists should reflect that commitment. So if you’re looking for a place to start, here are 8 books that Christians can pick up after Black History Month. Bonus: many of these resources highlight the historical experiences and contributions of black women, so you can start celebrating Women's History Month a little early!

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In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month and in recognition of the pressing need for Christian resources on domestic violence, CBE Bookstore would like to recommend these ten resources:

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