Vintage John Stott.
We often go to one of two extremes. Either we are so keen to live in the world that we imbibe non-Christian ideas and standards, and become conformed; or we are so keen not to lose our distinctive identity that we withdraw. The best way to avoid these two mistakes is to engage in mission. We are sent into the world as Christ’s representatives, so we can neither conform to it (or we cease to represent him) or withdraw from it (or we have no one to represent him to).
Every step counts.
The reports from the region reflected real despair of solutions, but there is real hope in the broad consensus and support that is now emerging from the American Christian community for a just and lasting two-state solution. Below is a copy of a letter that was signed by many of the leaders gathered in Atlanta and delivered to President Obama on Friday. The president’s meeting today with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is critical to bringing about peace and security for both Israelis and Palestinians. Two days was not a lot of time, but it was a step forward, and in a world torn apart by conflict, a step forward is always a hopeful one.
John W. de Gruchy believes one can be both.
As previously intimated, my theological journey has been profoundly influenced by Barth and more so by Bonhoeffer. In seeking to retrieve Christian humanism as an identity that stands in contrast to the religious fundamentalism and secularism that are destroying the foundations of human well-being, their insights and legacy remain important. But, of course, I live in a very different historical context to both of them, and I have been influenced in my thinking about Christian humanism by other strands of theological endeavour and, more especially Christian praxis. For Christian humanism is not primarily a theory but something that became embodied in people engaged in the struggle for human flourishing in South Africa.
In advocating Christian humanism, it should be clear, then, that I am not suggesting that we return to the Renaissance or Erasmus, though there are continuities between what he stood for and what we as Christian humanists need to affirm. Amongst these are: reaffirming the importance of the Bible as the primary liberating text for Christian faith, but a critical not a fundamentalist affirmation; the need to affirm Christian catholicity and eschew all forms of Christian nationalism; and the need to work for global peace. It should also be clear that I am not positing a liberal reduction of Christian faith, or any romantic or idealist notion of Christianity that exalts human nature as though it was wholly good, or progress as thought it were inevitable. I am also fully aware of the dangers of the term if our vision remains unchastened and redefined by the demands of gender justice, or so anthropocentric that we fail to see the connection between humanization, animal rights and the renewal of the environment.
For a study guide hungry person like me. I’m happy.
The Didasko Files, all written by friends of The Lausanne Movement, were launched in 2008. Their purpose is to nurture Christians in our love of Christ, and to equip us as his ambassadors in reconciling the world to himself.
We’ll have a chance to explore one of the sub-themes in Malaysia soon.
- – Foundations for mission
- – Christian mission among other faiths
- – Mission and post-modernity
- – Mission and power
- – Forms of missionary engagement
- – Theological education and formation
- – Christian communities in contemporary contexts
- – Mission and unity – ecclesiology and mission
- – Mission spirituality and authentic discipleship