The Cross and the Switchblade by David Wilkerson

With more than 16 million copies and distributed over 30 languages, The Cross and the Switchblade is a best selling book written by Pastor David Wilkerson together with John and Elizabeth Sherrill that we recommend for teenagers and young adult, youth-at-risk, young inmates and for people who abuses illegal substances.  

The Cross and the Switchblade is a book that chronicles the spiritual journey of Wilkerson when he embarks on a mission to help the members of troubled street gangs in New York City and encourage them to turn away from the drugs and gang violence that they were involved with. Set in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, the story traces Wilkerson’s journey from his own humble beginnings and his early years of pastoral ministry prior to his first visit to New York city. The narrative also traces the growth of his ministry from personal, one-on-one encounters into a thriving, sometimes miraculously funded, community outreach program. Along the way, the book explores themes relating to the power of Christian faith and the causes and effects of drug addiction. In 1970, a movie adaptation of this book was released starring Pat Boone as David Wilkerson and Erik Estrada as Nicky Cruz, the teen gang member whose life was transformed by Wilkerson’s ministry. The film has been viewed by an estimated 50 million people in over 30 languages in 150 countries according to World Film Crusade. 

  • “I sent this book to a friend who was in prison. She read it and it gave her hope for which I am so thankful. She finally got off drugs.” – C. Mathys, Amazon Review
  • I’m a volunteer prison minister and ordered this book along with Nicki Cruz’s book, Run Baby Run, for one of the inmates who reminded me of Nicky Cruz before and after. The book came in a timely manner and the inmate loved reading it and the other book, and said it gave him hope. The inmate who received this loves Jesus with his whole heart and loves to preach to other inmates when he can.” 
  • “This book is also suitable to give as a gift to someone who does not know the Lord.” – RRG., Amazon Review
  • ” I truly believe that the world is a better place because of him (David Wilkerson) and his outreach to young people. He makes one a believer.
  • “Friend of mine said that he actually got saved by reading this book. ” S. Walker, Amazon Review
  • “This book changed my life when I read it in jail in summer of 1970 after the hippie years of many drugs and all that went along with it. I would be surely dead now if not for this book and the Lord Jesus who caused Wilkerson to write it. I’ve been reformed since that day. At present, I’m giving this book to my son who is currently serving 6 Months in mandatory County Rehab.” – L. Doyle, Amazon Review
  • “My Dad became a Christian after reading this book while my husband read it on guard duty in Vietnam, and became a Christian a short time later!” C. Brown, Amazon Review
  • “This book is the amazing story of what the Holy Spirit can do if you surrender your life to Him. Just read and be encouraged. Your life will never be the same.” – B. Hughes, Amazon Review
ISBN 0515090255, 176 pages, Publisher – Jove

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