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Showing posts from June, 2015

The Church 12: We are All Anabaptists Now

The Church 12: We are All Anabaptists Now
Postmodernity, wrote Jean Francois Lyotard, entails an incredulity towards metanarratives.[1]  We might put this the other way around.  Postmodernity find mininarratives credible.  That is, that a story gives meaning to one’s own life is sufficient to make it right or true, without regard to some larger understanding.  Simply put, we create our own meaning and identity.
Constructed Identity, Not Universal, Natural Law
This way of thinking has now reached the level of the Supreme Court (Obergefell v. Hodges, 26 June, 2015).[2]  One might say that this is not the first time the court has interpreted law in light of postmodern thinking, but the decision announced today to legalize same-sex ‘marriage’ is a prime example of postmodern logic.  Marriage is what we say it is, not what God established in creation.
We need to recognize, however, that what we refer to today as postmodern is a perspective that has long been with Western society.  The focus of…

The Church 11: Christian Mission to the Post-Christian West

The Church 11: Christian Mission to the Post-Christian West
Introduction
Early Christian mission was far more than a theological challenge to Jewish and Graeco-Roman belief systems.  Our understanding of mission in terms of presenting a message about Jesus Christ and a challenge to believe that message to some extent accurately reflects the kind of missional preaching we find in the book of Acts.  Yet Acts also tells us that early Christian mission was not merely about what one believed; it was also about repentance and the transformation of one’s life.  Peter concludes the first missionary discourse in Acts by telling his audience what the expected response is to the Gospel message about Jesus Christ that he has just preached:
Acts 2:38-39  Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  39 For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who ar…