By AT News Team, June 18, 2015:     A new volume recently published by the department of world mission at Andrews University provides the most comprehensive set of material on social issues ever published by Adventists. It is 800 pages and addresses 30 different topics with contributions by 35 writers. This an essential tool for anyone who asks, “What is the Adventist position on ……… ?”

Fill in the blank: human rights, poverty, addictions, mental health, social change, prostitution, capital punishment, economics, immigration, race relations, polygamy, domestic violence, divorce and remarriage, aging, gay and lesbian believers, female genital cutting, urbanization, disabilities, obesity, natural disasters, end of life ethics, all of these and more. Many are topics that up to this point nothing definitive has been published.

These are all issues that Adventists can no longer ignore. They constitute the realities of life that many millions of people have to deal with, including many Adventists. They are not the traditional topics that Bible studies address, but they are the issues that people have to deal with and are part of the life of faith and the mission of the church in today’s world.

The 35 writers include social workers, Bible scholars, theologians, missionaries, lawyers, health professionals and counselors. They are all Adventists and many work for the denomination or an Adventist university or the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA). Some teach in other universities, work for government agencies and Christian organizations, as well as independent groups. (Full disclosure: Adventist Today managing editor Jeff Boyd is the author of two chapters, although from a different role.) Simply the short biographies of the writers gives a panoramic view of the involvement of Adventists around the world in many areas of need that do not often make it into mission stories in denominational periodicals, but constitute the fabric of reality in the 21st century.

Each chapter is carefully developed with a Bible foundation and references to Adventist theology and history, as well as good data from current research. The book is entitled Church and Society: Missiological Challenges for the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It operates from a mission-driven and mission-focused mentality. The overall editor is Dr. Rudi Maier, long time professor of missions at the seminary at Andrews University, as well as a veteran missionary overseas who grew up in Europe.

This is an important text and a milestone in Adventist publishing. For the social sciences it is an historic marker in much the same way that the publication of the Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary was an achievement for Adventist Bible scholars.

A special price has been arranged for readers of Adventist Today. You can order a copy at the special price by contacting Boubakar Sanou in the Department of World Mission at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University. He can be reached by Email at kologobo@gmail.com or by telephone at (269) 471-6505.

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