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A significant tranche of missional church thinking centres on the APEST paradigm. The argument is that if the church is to become a movement again after the sclerotic institutionalism of the Christendom era, it needs urgently to reactivate the gifts… (4 Feb 2022 | 2 comments)
It is clear from reading recent books on missional church that a missional theology needs to extend in two directions. It needs to extend in a social direction to encompass the existence of churches as communities interacting with… (31 Jan 2022 | 0 comments)
If you’re looking for a primer on missional theology, John Franke’s Missional Theology: An Introduction is not a bad option. It’s clearly presented and to the point, with just five chapters on “Missional God,” “Missional Church,” “Missional… (27 Jan 2022 | 0 comments)
John Franke’s Missional Theology: An Introduction starts with the idea associated with Karl Barth and the missiologist Karl Hartenstein that the biblical God is in his very nature a missional God. Mission is not primarily what the church… (25 Jan 2022 | 0 comments)
I am trying to give serious thought these days to how the church goes about its “mission” (for want of a better word). The methodology is usually pragmatic: the church as it currently is, in its various institutional forms, faces challenges of… (21 Jan 2022 | 2 comments)
I have two “passions”—as far as my work goes. The first is the narrative-historical thing. I think we understand the New Testament best when we read it essentially as a prophetic-apocalyptic narrative about the concrete historical(14 Jan 2022 | 7 comments)
I am very interested in the “eschatology” of Jesus and his followers—how they predicted future events—not only because it is the key to understanding the New Testament but also because it teaches us how to think theologically about the crises of our… (5 Jan 2022 | 2 comments)
I got to hear several good online presentations at the SBL Annual Meeting last week, including a provocative panel discussion on “Doing History and Doing Theology in the Study of Paul,” which demonstrated that the more serious fault line now is… (26 Nov 2021 | 1 comment)
Helge Seekamp recently drew attention to a paper by Jem Bendell, Professor of Sustainability Leadership at the University of Cumbria, entitled “Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy.” He suggests that Bendell gives us a “secular… (10 Nov 2021 | 8 comments)
Earlier this week I had a stimulating online conversation with my friend Michael Cooper. Michael is a missiologist, and back in the day, when he used to hang out with Communitas, we spent long hours talking about scripture, narrative, history, and… (22 Oct 2021 | 2 comments)
I read Roger Olson’s blog from time to time. He has recently written a couple of posts asking, “What is the Essence of Christianity?” We need to address these simple but fundamental questions from time to time. I know, it’s been a while, what… (12 Oct 2021 | 9 comments)
I did this video podcast interview with Cliff Sekowe a few months back. Cliff is an amiable South African pastor and theologian who is keen to get scholars talking sensibly about some the intellectual challenges facing contemporary Christian faith.… (18 Sep 2021 | 0 comments)
This really is a bit of a puzzle. In Matthew’s Gospel Jesus says concerning the hour and day of God’s judgment of Israel and the concomitant vindication of the Son of Man that it will be as in the days of Noah. In the midst of life catastrophe will… (2 Sep 2021 | 2 comments)
The early apostolic testimony was that Jesus was “raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:3). So the standard belief has been that the resurrection of the Messiah was prophesied in the Old Testament—somewhere, it’s… (28 Aug 2021 | 0 comments)
Thom Stark’s book The Human Faces of God: What Scripture Reveals When it Gets God Wrong is an attack on the doctrine of inerrancy—or perhaps better, an attempt to reframe the problem of biblical errancy. In chapter 8, which is the only… (16 Aug 2021 | 9 comments)
I have addressed the troubling longer term historical implications of my reading of the New Testament in a number of posts, some of which are listed below. But the question has come up again, so here’s another go at outlining a response to the… (5 Aug 2021 | 15 comments)
In a new comment on an old post entitled “The battle between theology and history for the soul of the church: 24 antitheses” Matthew makes a sensible observation about the theological process. It comes, I guess, in response to the tendency I have to… (3 Aug 2021 | 0 comments)
This is a quick one—an audio version of a post from 2018 on the doctrine of the second coming. Simply put, the evangelical church needs to choose between dogma and history, and I think we should choose history. For more on the argument about the… (1 Aug 2021 | 0 comments)
If the “chief end of man” is to glorify God and enjoy him forever, as the Westminster Catechism asserts in its opening clause, why is there no mention of this in the creation narratives? Eh? Humanity is created, as male and female, and is… (27 Jul 2021 | 0 comments)
In Mark 6 Jesus sends the twelve out in pairs to call people to repentance, cast out demons, and heal the sick (Mk. 6:7-13). Perhaps because of their mission, the name of Jesus becomes widely known. Herod hears about it, and he comes to the… (21 Jul 2021 | 3 comments)