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The LifeWay Blacklist

Is the list real? Either way, there have been changes at LifeWay, a bookstore chain associated with Broadman & Holman Publishing and the Southern Baptist Convention (though operating at arm’s length from the latter.) So first, a blogger published a story on a house-cleaning that allegedly took place along with a .pdf list of the authors. Then he updated with a clarification that these authors were not previously carried as part of store inventory, but had been available to order, and now would not be available to order. There’s also more on the story at CT’s news page, Gleanings.  

As we’d hate to see anything happen to this list, we’ve taken a screenshot of it for the archives. I think it’s ironic that American churches forced R. T. Kendall into exile in the UK, where his ministry flourished for 25 years, and now LifeWay is repeating history. I also don’t get their issue with the Common English Bible, which we use at Christianity 201 quite frequently. Banning The Voice Bible is just plain sad. By listing the TNIV as a banned product, they are actually quite literally flogging a dead horse. (Maybe they have a Bible translation conflict of interest.) As for Greg Boyd, if you’re that threatened by the idea of Open Theology, then you’re basically saying that customers are morons and can’t think for themselves. (And why Neale Donald Walsch needs mention, I can’t image; I doubt a single Christian bookstore in the U.S. stocks him.)  Personally, I think Noah Hutchings should be on the list, followed by Michael and Debi Pearl, but we’ll save that for another column.

LifeWay's banned products list


  1. April 10, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    Interesting that “religious tourism” authors Don Piper and Todd Burpo aren’t listed, even though this genre was singled out in a previous LifeWay announcement a few weeks ago. Even more mysterious, the entire Sarah Young catalog survived the cut:

  2. April 14, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    21 of those listed above sell in my store. Currently I would say Bill Johnson is our top selling author. Some of the 21 I spotted are by special order only but still ordered enough to stand out on the list.

    • April 18, 2015 at 10:20 am

      Finally got around to doing this. I got 27, though 2 are discontinued when sold out. Given that they are so profit-motive-driven, I’m surprised they would do a complete ban on Joyce Meyer. At the other end of the spectrum, no Henri Nouwen. What are they afraid of? I have NAB and NJB in stock because I want my Catholic customers to come back. I think it’s a reasonable strategy and it is working. And what’s their deal with The Voice Bible? I have a great respect for David Capes and the other translators and what they were trying to do and the issues they wrestled with creating a new translation that was really new. Ditto the CEB. I love R. T. Kendall, I wonder if any of them actually read any books by him or if they went on hearsay?

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