Bob Ekblad is the founder of Tierra Nueva, a ministry in Washington State north of Seattle which reaches out particularly to people “on the margins.” Bob and wife Gracie also travel internationally bringing seminars/workshops, again particularly focusing on ministry to the marginalized, equipping the saints for the work of this ministry. An important element of Bob’s training for his present role was to study theology under Daniel Bourguet at Montpellier in the south of France in the days before Daniel left his academic position. Bob wrote an excellent foreword that appears in each of our translations; I hope to publish that on this website. It was through reading his books that I, as translator, came to Daniel.
Bob’s great books are Reading the Bible with the Damned, A New Christian Manifesto, The Beautiful Gate, Guerrilla Gospel. It was the first of these that put me on to DB; it was such a transformative book to me that I made a point of following up on the bibliographical notes. Bob had a background in social activism in Central America which he began to realize was most fruitful when helping people understand the Bible, and, in order to get what he saw as the best theological training he could, went to study under Daniel in Montpellier, France. He writes in his foreword to the Daniel books about the detailed scholarship and erudition he found, as well as the strong devotional life. Bob subsequently became, contrary to his expectations, involved in more Pentecostal type ministry; he now endeavours to bring the best of the word and the spirit together. His approach to ministering good news to marginalized people has consistently taken him outside the bounds of the more prevalent evangelical church life – and doctrine. It takes quite a lot of help and courage to move away from what are often black and white approaches which can prove very restrictive; Bob was much helped in what might be termed this theological task by Daniel; I experienced something of the same, and it is perhaps people with similar needs who are most likely to find Daniel’s books helpful.
Bob’s books as of 2023 are as follows:
Reading the Bible with the Damned
A New Christian Manifesto:Pledging Allegiance to the Kingdom of God
The Beautiful Gate: Enter Jesus’ Global Liberation Movement
Guerrilla Bible Studies: Volume 1: Surprising Encounters with God
Guerrilla Bible Studies: Volume 2: God’s Radical Recruiting
Guerrilla Bible Studies: Volume 3: Basic training for the Jesus movement
Guerrilla Bible Studies: Volume 4: On Earth as in Heaven
It was the first of these that put me on to Daniel’s books since it references several of them. A New Christian Manifesto contains a valuable account of the background to Bob’s current ministry, a journey from social action and suspicion of ‘right-wing’ churches to a ministry of healing. The title suggests that Bob is calling people out of allegiance to a political system (specifically a primary allegiance to the USA) to allegiance to Christ and his Kingdom; I would suggest that this is a much needed call. The Beautiful Gate and Guerrilla Gospel further exemplify a methodology of Bible study among, particularly, the unchurched. The Guerrilla Bible Studies volumes provide outlines for conducting studies in various settings; Guerrilla Gospel tells how; these volumes give the what.
There are so many good Christian books. But there are certain books/ministries that turn out to be life-changing; when you have books that have done that for you personally, it can be difficult to know what to say because you think so highly of them. I would also recommend looking at Bob’s blog and there are some nice videos of his testimony.
A Tierra Nueva vehicle is The People’s Seminary, which includes the People’s Seminary Press, our vehicle for publishing more of Daniel’s books.