God's Forever Family: The Jesus People Movement in America

God's Forever Family: The Jesus People Movement in America

by Larry Eskridge


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Winner of the 2014 Christianity Today Book of the Year
First Place Winner of the Religion Newswriters Association's Non-fiction Religion Book of the Year

The Jesus People movement was a unique combination of the hippie counterculture and evangelical Christianity. It first appeared in the famed "Summer of Love" of 1967, in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district, and spread like wildfire in Southern California and beyond, to cities like Seattle, Atlanta, and Milwaukee. In 1971 the growing movement found its way into the national media spotlight and gained momentum, attracting a huge new following among evangelical church youth, who enthusiastically adopted the Jesus People persona as their own. Within a few years, however, the movement disappeared and was largely forgotten by everyone but those who had filled its ranks.

God's Forever Family argues that the Jesus People movement was one of the most important American religious movements of the second half of the 20th-century. Not only do such new and burgeoning evangelical groups as Calvary Chapel and the Vineyard trace back to the Jesus People, but the movement paved the way for the huge Contemporary Christian Music industry and the rise of "Praise Music" in the nation's churches. More significantly, it revolutionized evangelicals' relationship with youth and popular culture. Larry Eskridge makes the case that the Jesus People movement not only helped create a resurgent evangelicalism but must be considered one of the formative powers that shaped American youth in the late 1960s and 1970s.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780190881351
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 05/01/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 402
Sales rank: 586,649
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Larry Eskridge was born in North Carolina and raised in the Chicago area, where he was involved with the Jesus People movement in the 1970s. A student of evangelicals' relationship to mass media and pop culture, he has been on the staff of the Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals at Wheaton College since 1988.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Remembering the Jesus Generation

1: 'God Knocked Me off My Metaphysical Ass': The First "Jesus Freaks" in San Francisco
2: Jesus Comes to Haight-Ashbury
3: ". . . and Your Sons and Your Daughters Shall Prophecy": The Jesus People Movement in Southern California, 1968-1969
4: Unto Seattle, Milwaukee, New Jersey, and the Uttermost Parts: The Jesus People Movement Goes Nationwide
5: It Only Takes a Spark: The Jesus People Movement in the National Spotlight
6: The Jesus Kids: The Jesus People Movement Becomes Evangelical Youth Culture, 1971-1974
7: Division in the Camp: The Jesus People vs. the Children of God
8: Sweet, Sweet Song of Salvation: Music and the Jesus People
9: I Wish We'd All Been Ready: The Jesus People Fade From View
10: God's Forever Family: The Long-Term Impact of the Jesus People Movement

Appendix A: Jesus People Survey: Tabulations and Comments

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