Gracism: The Art of Inclusion, By David A. Anderson


The Art of Inclusion

BridgeLeader Books

Revised and Expanded Edition

by David A. Anderson
With David Heiliger
Foreword by Erwin Raphael McManus

  • Length: 192 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.5 in
  • Published: May 09, 2023
  • Imprint: IVP
  • Item Code: A0732
  • ISBN: 9781514007327

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We can't ignore color, class, or culture. Instead, we must engage matters of race with a different posture and embrace radical inclusion of the marginalized.

Now with David Heiliger, David A. Anderson revives the biblical model for showing special grace to others on the basis of ethnicity, class, or social distinction—one of gracism. Responding to ongoing problems of prejudice and injustice, the original seven sayings of the gracist now become eight with a new chapter alongside a revised conclusion.

Take this opportunity to extend God's grace to people of all backgrounds in this edition of Gracism.

"[Gracism] was ahead of its time, but it is needed in our time more than ever."

Erwin Raphael McManus, lead pastor of Mosaic, from the foreword

"After reading this book, I am convinced: we need gracism. Division and inequality are consequences of our fallen world. But as the members of the church we must walk against division and injustice. The brilliance of this book is that we are shown how to overcome individual-level racism, clearly and plainly. Dr. Anderson provides us with real tools for real life. Gracism is an act, a state of being. Members of the body, let's be gracists."

Michael Emerson, Founding Director, Center on Race, Religion, and Urban Life, Rice University, and coauthor of Divided by Faith and United by Faith

"Dr. David Anderson is one of the finest reconciliation practitioners that I know. In this book, Gracism: The Art of Inclusion, he honestly shares his journey into a profound concept that has the potential to revolutionize how we confront racism to create a society with liberty and justice for all."

Brenda Salter McNeil, president of Salter McNeil Associates, LLC, co-author of The Heart of Racial Justice: How Soul Change Leads to Social Change

"David Anderson speaks, lives and is called to the truth of multicultural relationships and ministry. This book is not a book just for black people to work with whites or whites to learn how to be sensitive to blacks, but a book about God's practical, real transforming grace for all people to be kingdom people."

Phil Jackson, lead pastor, The House, coauthor, The Hip-Hop Church

"David Anderson addresses one of the real solutions to the issue of racism with this difficult practice of grace! David's take from an African American perspective enlightens us to how deep racism runs even in Christian institutions and relationships, but more than that, he also offers us a biblical initiative to lead us to the vision of being a community that reflects the diversity of God."

Dave Gibbons, lead pastor, NewSong Church, and CVO, Xealot Inc.

"A tough-minded book and clear-sighted look at what it means for Christians to 'overcome evil with good.' If metaphor is metamorphosis, the metaphor of 'gracism' will change how we do church like it's changed how I do life."

Leonard Sweet, E. Stanley Jones Professor of Evangelism, The Theological School, Drew University, and Visiting Distinguished Professor, George Fox University

"With profound concepts and a compelling voice, Gracism creates an accessible tool for navigating culture clashes. Anderson merges a sophisticated understanding of cultural dynamics with real-time, everyday advice. He takes old-time concepts like 'favor' and gives them flesh and blood for a modern world."

Nikki A. Toyama, coeditor of More Than Serving Tea: Asian American Women on Expectations, Relationships, Leadership and Faith

"Dr. David Anderson has given us both a great new word and a fresh way to approach our racial and cultural divisions in the church--and in life. I'm hoping a huge audience will read this book and discover the heart and passion of one of the racial reconciliation movement's most dynamic young leaders."

Edward Gilbreath, author of Reconciliation Blues: A Black Evangelical's Inside View of White Christianity

"Anderson provides us with more than just a theoretical or political rationale for Christians to work toward racial reconciliation. He also provides us with practical methods by which this reconciliation may be achieved. Gracism needs to become a term common to Christians of all races. As we follow the advice in this important book we will find ourselves becoming inclusive of those who are different than us. As Anderson so ably demonstrates, it is when we develop the heart and skills necessary for such a conclusion that we will be able to truly adopt Christlike attitudes toward our racially different neighbors and colleagues."

George Yancey, associate professor of sociology, University of North Texas, author of Beyond Racial Gridlock

"What a beautiful—and needed!—book. Dave Anderson calls people who are saved by the grace of God to extend grace to their neighbors, whoever they are. I can't imagine anyone reading this book without being marked for life as an agent of gracism, which may be the best synonym for reconciliation ever invented."

Brian D. McLaren, author/activist

"David Anderson is a powerful voice of hope and a national leader in racial reconciliation. This book provides a new--and the only--'ism' that can heal the deep wounds of racism."

Donald T. Floyd Jr., President and CEO, National 4-H Council

"In this book the author encourages people to be gracious to minorities and help them live a quality life. Anderson skillfully explains this biblical mandate to care for the marginalized."

Book Bargains and Previews, May 2008

"If you have been exposed to this idea of God desiring ethnic reconciliation and justice but have felt overwhelmed by the task or wondered why it should even be a priority, this book is for you."

Being Redefined Blog, May 25, 2007

"Anderson has practiced what he preaches, which is to honor diversity and be committed to the dignity of other races and cultures. His concept of gracism--as opposed to racism--involves not accepting special treatment at the expense of another and not just ministering to the 'least of these,' but standing alongside them."

Outreach, July/August 2007

"Anderson's framework is innovative, and the discussion questions included after each chapter will usefully guide the conversations that this provocative manifesto is sure to inspire."

Publishers Weekly, April 9, 2007

Read an Excerpt


Foreword by Erwin Raphael McManus

1. Everyone Has a Dot
2. From Racism to Gracism
3. The Art of Inclusion
4. Saying One: I Will Lift You Up
5. Saying Two: I Will Cover You
6. Saying Three: I Will Share with You
7. Saying Four: I Will Honor You
8. Saying Five: I Will Stand with You
9. Saying Six: I Will Consider You
10. Saying Seven: I Will Celebrate with You
11. Saying Eight: I Will Heal with You
12. How Can I Become a Gracist?

Questions for Reflection and Discussion


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David Anderson

David A. Anderson (DPhil, DLitt) is the founder and senior pastor of Bridgeway Community Church. He is the founder and president of Gracism Global andand chancellor of Omega Graduate School. David's other books include Letters Across the Divide and Multicultural Ministry. He and his wife, Amber, have three children.