Struggles for Shalom: Peace and Violence across the Testaments

Struggles for Shalom is a collection of essays by biblical scholars about peace, justice, and violence in ancient Jewish and Christian texts, written to honor the life work of Mennonite scholars Perry B. Yoder and Willard M. Swartley. In this volume, 23 authors—colleagues, former students, friends, and others influenced by Yoder’s and Swartley’s scholarship—add to the honorees’ work in appreciation for their shared focus on biblical texts’ lessons of peace.

Specific texts and topics include Eccl 3:1–9 and time for war, Ezek 14:12–23 and God's retribution, Luke 22:31–61 and Peter's sword, the temple cleansing episodes in John 2 and Mark 11, sectarianism and violence in manuscripts from the Dead Sea, violence in creation in the Hebrew Bible, Chronicles as utopian literature, peace and violence in Paul's writings, and globalization in biblical studies. This collection is diverse and ambitious. For church and academy, and for anyone curious about what Scripture has to say about peace and violence, this book delivers focused study of peace and violence across the Testaments.

“For Mennonites academics who think, study, and advocate for peace, the world has become much more complicated in the past half-century. This volume reflects the many ways in which some of the best contemporary Mennonite and related biblical scholarship addresses the issues of peace and violence in and through the biblical texts.”
John Kampen, Van Bogard Professor of Biblical Interpretation, Methodist Theological School, Ohio

“What a valuable conversation about the message of the Bible with regard to peace, justice, violence, the nature of God, and the character of human ethics! From assessments of the state of biblical scholarship on peace and violence to fresh treatments of ‘problem’ passages in the Bible, this collection offers a rich feast not to be missed.”
Loren L. Johns, Professor of New Testament, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary

“Struggles for Shalom is a most welcome contribution to critically engaged biblical scholarship. Perhaps the most fitting tribute to the legacies of Perry Yoder and Willard Swartley is that these authors, led by Laura Brenneman and Brad Schantz, extend biblical, theological, and ethical conversations about violence and peace to new generations of global citizens, inside and beyond Mennonite traditions. _is valuable collection is ideal for use in churches, classrooms, and anywhere else justice is sought.”
Davina C. Lopez, Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida

About the editors

Laura L. Brenneman is a visiting lecturer at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and New Testament editor of Studies in Peace and Scripture. She was a student of Perry Yoder and Willard Swartley at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary.

Brad D. Schantz is also a former student of Perry Yoder and Williard Swartley at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, and received his Master’s degree in Hebrew Bible from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Struggles for Shalom cover
Price: $44.00
ISBN: 978-1-62032-622-0
400 pages. Paper

For more information and to order your copy, visit the Wipf and Stock page for this volume

Photo gallery

View photos from the Struggles for Shalom book celebration.


Wilma Ann Bailey
Jo-Ann A. Brant
Laura L. Brenneman
Jacob W. Elias
Reta Halteman Finger
Michael J. Gorman
Nancy R. Heisey
Paul Keim
Christopher Marshall
Safwat Marzouk
Douglas B. Miller
Ben C. Ollenburger
Dorothy M. Peters
David Rensberger
Andrea Dalton Saner
Brad D. Schantz
Mary H. Schertz
Steven Schweitzer
Willard M. Swartley
Jackie Wyse-Rhodes
Joshua Yoder
Perry B. Yoder
Thomas R. Yoder Neufeld
Paul Yokota
Gordon Zerbe