Jesus & Co.

Our book provides a practical and relatable connection to the historical Jesus for business people today. Jesus & Co. uses the exact words spoken by Jesus and compelling historical evidence to bring Jesus alive in a very different way. He becomes accessible and real, by connecting His words and the ancient Judean marketplace with inspiring people from the 21st century.

Jesus & Co.

Connecting the Lessons of The Gospel with Today’s Business World

Discover a Radical New way to Bring Jesus to the Work Place

Jesus & Co. presents a radically different way to bring Jesus and the Gospels to our work lives. Learn how to not only survive, but thrive while swimming with sharks that surround us each day in the workplace. A very hopeful and encouraging book written by a former Fortune 500 “C” level executive, who completed seven years of theological education to receive a Doctorate degree in Ministry. Jesus & Co. presents the blending of both these worlds in an extraordinarily practical way to help other working Christians.

Jesus & Co. uses the exact words spoken by Jesus and compelling historical evidence to bring Jesus alive in a very different way. Jesus becomes accessible and real, by connecting His words and the ancient Judean marketplace with inspiring business people from the 21st century.

This book is a must read for both clergy and faithful Christians, which has received 5 star reviews from its readers on Amazon.

“Bruce has given us another Jesus. He has made Jesus relevant to our lives.” Dr. Virginia Samuel, Former Associate Dean of Drew University Theological School

“Jesus & Co is an inspiring and thought-provoking book! The real life business challenges of today compared to similar issues occurring during the time of Jesus were so interesting.” Mike Powell CEO

Jesus & Co. is a journey through time and the lives of Jesus and marvelous Christians.

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Reviews & Testimonials

Welcome to the Marketplace and the Messiah. Here, in the company of Jesus, Networker, Delegator, Team Builder, and Borrower, you'll discover the best practices of the gospel as lived out in the aisles and corporate headquarters of America. In Jesus and Co., Hartman, famed CFO of Foot Locker, shares his own search for a productive career as he walks his readers toward the One who is the Way, the truth and the life. Blessings on the Way.

Dr. Heather ElkinsAuthor of Holy stuff of life

As a Christ follower and business owner, I can tell you that every single word in this book has immense value. You can learn a ton from Bruce's workplace experience, personal faith, and God-given insight. A must-read!

Bryan MilesFounder and CEO of Belay

What Bruce Hartman has done in JESUS AND CO., and it’s no small accomplishment, is take the stories of Jesus and retold them in a way that not only makes them particularly relevant to the modern business world, but also reinforces their meaning for everyone.

Richard Willettaward winning playwright and editor of Proof of Heaven

Bruce Hartman presents a persuasive argument in a well written format. I would expect nothing less.
In the book Jesus and Co., Bruce invites the reader into his life as a senior officer in several Fortune 500 companies, while wrestling with the relevance of his faith as a Christian to his professional life. Drawing on his considerable body of work as the Chief Financial Officer of major corporations and, at the same time, drawing on the spiritual resources and challenges of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, he gives insight to what it means to be a person of faith in every corner of one’s life. Bruce has given us another Jesus. He has made Jesus relevant to our lives. This book is evangelism at its finest.

Dr. Virginia SamuelFormer Associate Dean of Drew University Theological School

Bravo! Great book full of wonderful life lessons about Jesus, the Apostle's and the contemporary workplace! Bruce provides an excellent view of the connection of today's marketplace with Jesus's marketplace! A great guide for anyone searching to "balance" themselves, especially in today's business world. A MUST read for any business executive looking to be successful ethically and professionally!

Mike ZawoyskyFormer CEO of Shoe Sensation

Congratulations to Bruce Hartman for writing a unique book that explains how many of the challenges that he encountered during his distinguished career in the business world were successfully resolved using tactics that were in line with the key messages from the teachings of Jesus Christ. Having worked for Bruce during most of his years at Foot Locker, I can attest to his distinct management style that empowered others to “take charge”, his insistence that everyone “focus on what counts” and to do so in a way that was ethically sound. His leadership style and the management process he employed were instrumental in getting the organization to capitalize on many opportunities that led to Foot Locker’s ongoing success. In fact, many of the management processes that were developed during his years at Foot Locker are still used by the Company today.

Peter BrownFormer CIO and Treasurer of Footlocker

The relationship between Christianity and capitalism is fraught and complicated. Yet, in this thought-provoking book Bruce Hartman gives us a hopeful way of following Jesus in the marketplace with integrity and faithfulness. Christian leadership requires a rootedness that is also principally adaptable. Hartman show us how to do so with probity and character.

Javier A. VieraVice Provost, Dean of the Theological School, and Professor of Pastoral Theology and Leadership, Drew University

Bruce Hartman explores how and why the god of the market is a false god, but Jesus in the marketplace is true and to be trusted. Be moved, challenged, instructed, and inspired by this supremely satisfying and brimful book.

Leonard Sweetbest-selling author, speaker and founder of preachthestory.com

Preview & Excerpts

Preface

Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done. —Luke 22:42

Late at night in an ancient Judean garden, a man in his early thirties asked, “Are you sure this is the only way?”

It was the third time that evening the young man had returned to the garden, each time with the same request: “Are you sure?”

He was met by silence, but the answer was clear. The fullness of his humanity exposed, he was sweating to the point of bleeding. “Not my will but yours,” he reluctantly assented. He knew what lay ahead. Betrayal by his friends and humiliation in front of his community. An agonizing beating that would tear the skin from his back. A trek carrying his cross to a hill. Death by crucifixion. All this he and he alone had to undergo in order to connect humanity with God. In fact, he was creating a flower for humankind called Easter.

*

Many times in our work life, we face difficult choices, such as the choice between acquiescence to an unethical request from a boss or colleague and doing what’s right. We are frequently tempted to take the easy way, to relieve the pressure on ourselves, to dispel the tension, to avoid the moment of having to deliver a tough message to our superiors and to disobey them. The walk to the boss’s office will seem endless. Each breath and thought will hang thickly around us, almost choking us. But we have a choice; we can do the ethical thing, and we have the example above, of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane on that fateful night, to show why this is the choice we should make.

Jesus and His Mission

This book isn’t about “believe or be doomed.” It is about a journey with Jesus. A walk with Jesus that reveals God’s values for our personal and work lives. It is for the vast unserved community of the marketplace looking for a way to create straight moral paths in their work and personal lives. It is for those seeking a change in their hearts to pursue God’s way and God himself. For we follow God with our hearts and souls. It is our egos that pursue the world’s temptations.

from page 12

Jesus' Purpose

Jesus was around thirty when he was baptized and then spent forty days in the wilderness, where he faced and overcame trials and temptation. Jesus was then free to begin his mission to reveal God’s values to humankind, and specifically morality and ethics for the first-century marketplace.

  • How to thrive and be ethical at the same time.
  • How to treat others.
  • How to recognize that the source of all good comes from God.
  • How to have a personal relationship with God.

In essence, Jesus’s moral emphasis was on “self-worth, not net worth,” and it was a message he preached in the Judean and Galilean markets. These were the places where daily life happened. People worked and struggled to earn a living. They bartered, sold their goods, created artifacts from shoes to ceramics, made money or lost it. They were prey to con men and cheats, and as in markets today, they were often exploited by men cleverer and more unscrupulous than they. They battled throughout their lives to rise above the temptation to get back at the offenders and avoid falling into the traps of greed and fear. When they had turned in the past to their religious leaders for help, they had been provided with legalistic answers—no help at all.

Jesus came among them to reveal a different way, a way embraced by God. He came to show them the moral path that kept them connected to God. Jesus came to show them that serving God and being successful could both be part of a connected life. To show them that temptation and the lure of money and power were the distractions to this path.

What is not widely discussed is that prior to his baptism and experience in the wilderness, Jesus had spent most of his life as a marketplace worker, a carpenter, a craftsman, a skilled artisan. We know from the earliest version of the Gospels that his profession was tekton, an honorific term for “artisan,” usually associated with a carpenter, builder, or woodworker. He would have attained this level by initially learning his craft from his father, as was the custom in the first century, and then becoming more involved with other tradespeople. Over time, he would have progressed as a woodworker to the level of tekton, now able to help support his family and pay his bills.

Into this commercial world Jesus went to teach people to do good. To do good—not to gain something of material value, but to be something of value.

from page 60

Jesus' View on Earning a Living

Jesus is often believed to have said that earning a decent living is wrong. What he actually meant was that the covetous pursuit of money is wrong. He wasn’t against earning a living; Jesus was against earning a living by defrauding our neighbors and moving away from having a relationship with God. Jesus knew that families and individuals needed money, and that they had to work for it. In fact, as an artisan, historians suggest that Jesus probably earned a wage comparable to others of his day. Jesus knew and knows we all have to pay our bills.

Jesus was also a friend of the wealthy. Two rich benefactors, Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, not only provided him with support, but were responsible for his tomb, and the perfumes and shroud needed for the burial. Jesus wasn’t biased against any social group, he was biased toward those who lived for God, who loved God and their neighbor. Both Nicodemus, who interestingly was a Pharisee, and Joseph had engaged with Jesus in seeking the truth. Both men learned that truth. Both men, who were from the elite, showed that even though they were part of the structure Jesus was trying to change, they were people who pursued God and wanted a different life.

Jesus knew the value of hard work. He was more concerned with citizens who did not have a giving nature, who protected their assets when others were in need. He was interested in a person’s self-worth, not net worth. Jesus loved a generous heart.

from pages 71-72

Jesus, the Faithful Employee

It’s difficult for us humans to imagine Jesus’s thoughts. At Gethsemane he was all by himself, wrestling with which way to go. He turned to kenosis, knowing full well that God had given him only one path to follow. The process took deep prayer. Three times he went and knelt humbly. Three times he searched for a different path. Three times Jesus’s inner human thoughts shifted from himself to God’s will, and finally Jesus submitted in humble obedience to do what God had asked.

Through kenosis, Jesus embodied a loyal and faithful employee. In order to serve God Jesus surrendered the natural human tendency toward personal interest. There was a job to do, and by doing his job, Jesus would be connecting humanity with God. By giving up and draining himself of personal ambition for the team, he became an effective worker on behalf of God.

from pages 79-80

Jesus, the Model for Networking

Jesus knew that networking was about giving, not getting. If he was to fulfill his mission—to save the world—he needed humankind. In John 5:30, he said “I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge; and my judgment is just, because I seek to do not my own will but the will of him who sent me.” Jesus knew he needed to be a model networker to help people, who in turn could help his mission. Anyone was a candidate for his help, not just the rich and powerful, but also people on the margins.

from page 114

Jesus, the Skillful Delegator

Jesus created the model for delegation, as is evident from the remarkable growth of his Way, now called Christianity. Jesus looked for the right people he could assign the tasks of growing his organization. He taught while he was delegating. He didn’t use dictatorial management techniques, he asked “what do you think?” He got to know those he sent forth and helped them learn the nuances to be successful. He was willing to walk where he was sending his flock.

from page 143

Jesus, the Life and Business Coach

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” This is a hallmark Christian thought; it implies that through Jesus we experience God’s values in our personal lives and in the marketplace. The statement “I am the way” represents many aspects of Jesus: Jesus as God’s intermediary, the model of sacrifice, a way of loving God and our neighbor, a way of unwinding the ethical dilemmas facing us in the marketplace—a way of living life.

Who is Jesus to our current marketplace? He is a bestselling author. He is the founder of the largest organization in the world. He worked his way up from the bottom in the marketplace. If he booked a speaking tour in contemporary times, he would sell out every venue on the tour. He is a gifted strategist and keeps the road straight. He has been there and knows our issues. But most importantly his words and presence are as available to us today as they were for the first-century marketplace.

How do we get on Jesus’ schedule for a session of life coaching? How do we develop a relationship with Jesus that becomes intimate and helpful? How do we tap into his way as a guide to help us with our customers and colleagues? Simple. Read the Bible, and specifically the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5–7), and develop a personal relationship with Jesus through prayer. Jesus will be there. Remarkably, Jesus is present today in both his teachings and through prayer.

from page 193

Additional Reviews

55 out of 5 stars (based on 30 reviews)
Excellent97%
Very good3%
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Bruce's professional background weaves in and out of the story with wonderful examples to support the ideas in the book

July 14, 2018

This is a fascinating book – it brings to light the importance of Jesus as a player in the marketplace and how his parables were meant to relate to our present day actions in our jobs. Bruce’s professional background weaves in and out of the story with wonderful examples to support the ideas in the book.

Katherine

thought provoking.

June 7, 2018

this author has a great ability to bring alive Jesus stories into real-life situations and times. I am thinking about purchasing it for all my employees.

Johnny Phillips

I feel more experienced and feel I have a heads up on similar, albeit much more tame, situations in my life right now!

May 16, 2018

This is a such a great book for career guidance!
I wouldn’t consider myself the most religious person around, even though i did CCD and learned about the Bible in high school, but the focused stories on Jesus were shared in a very business oriented way that highlight the moral and professional benefits of ethical business conduct.
The book gives homage to Jesus’s own way of teaching by sharing modern stories of people who were faced with difficult challenges in their workplace. The point of view of these stories makes it very personal, compelling, and easy to relate to. Their situations are as timeless as the very teachings Jesus shares with us.

Danny

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