Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted by on Jan 13, 2013 in Theology | 0 comments

Mission in Word and Deed

Mission in Word and Deed

  There is an old debate among Christians that no less affects those involved in faith and work initiatives: is evangelism the highest priority, or is it acts of justice and mercy? On one side, theologians will argue that declaring the gospel and preaching the Word is most important. After all, eternal souls are at stake. The other side will argue that Jesus taught, “May your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” The priority is not in “other-worldly” pursuits, but in establishing God’s kingdom now through acts of justice and mercy. Lesslie Newbigin, in his seminal The Gospel in a Pluralist Society, argues, “If we turn to the Gospels we are bound to note the indissoluble nexus between deeds and words.” For example, in the Gospel of John, there is a large portion of teaching from Jesus, but it usually follows something Jesus has done: the healing of a blind man, the feeding of the 5,000, raising Lazarus from the dead. Again,...

Read More

Posted by on Dec 17, 2012 in Culture, Theology | 0 comments

Between NPR and K-LOVE

Between NPR and K-LOVE

I often find myself divided when driving in the car. Should I turn my radio to NPR or to K-LOVE? Most days I find myself compelled to listen to both. NPR (National Public Radio) is my daily connection to the world. News, author interviews, Science Friday – to me, the life of the world is beautiful, and immensely important to God. Whether it be education (my own field) or the latest research in brain research (certainly not my field), this is where real human life is found. But if I listen to NPR exclusively, I become worn out, feeling kind of thin, like old Bilbo Baggins, “like butter scraped over too much bread.” The sad secular monks who fill the airwaves of NPR have knowledge, but most don’t have hope, a reason to dance. Frankly, most days I need a reason to dance. So, I turn to K-LOVE. The praise and worship songs (most of them, anyway), give me hope. Christ is resurrected from the dead, and the song...

Read More

Posted by on Nov 28, 2012 in Theology | 0 comments

Mixing Faith and Work

Mixing Faith and Work

Americans spend more hours working per week than any other developed nation. Work defines many of us. Yet it’s rare that churches will intentionally talk about work on Sunday. Tim Keller wrote a new book on this topic that I recently reviewed for Comment Magazine. Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work (Dutton, 2012) is theologically rich and philosophically informed, yet accessible and filled with practical wisdom. Here’s the first section of my review: When British missionary Lesslie Newbigin returned from the mission field in 1974, he was often asked, “What is the greatest difficulty you face in moving from India to England?” He always responded, “The disappearance of hope.” During the forty years he spent in India, the West had lost a sense of direction. The idea of progress, so strong in the 1930s, now seemed cliché. Adrift in a sea of pluralism, many youth became little more than isolated individuals pursuing personal gain. Ministers and academics began to question how to address this hope-starved generation....

Read More