Showing posts from September, 2010

Commonwealth Game, yes or no?

As I write, we are waiting for the result of a meeting concerning the Commonwealth Games in India. What to make of it?

The first question is whether the games should ever have been given to India in the first place. I find myself struggling to understand the decision. On the one hand it seems a wonderful gesture which could have the spin-off off encouraging the nation. The nation could receive great international kudos for it. The building of facilities will give jobs. Great wealth might flow in from the many tourists and athletes who come in to the nation. Like the football World Cup in South Africa, it may have a great positive effect on the nation.

Yet, is India really able to manage such an event? Does it have the infrastructure to manage preparations? Can the safety of athletes and visitors be ensured in a nation which is so crowded and unstable. And who will make the money as the nation builds the great stadia and other facilities. Will it go to the poor, or just further line …

Qu'ran Burning and All That

What to make of the proposed Qu'ran burning?

First, we the issue is complex. The whole western world is now embroiled in a clash of world views. The clash of world views is complex in that it involves many variables. It is not merely a Christian - Islam clash. It is a clash within Islam between moderates and extremists. It includes secular humanist socially liberal westerners who advocate tolerance and freedom of religion vs other westerners including some Christians who advocate action to suppress what are seen as threatening forms of religion. It includes different understandings of the use of force and involvement in the state with some wanting preventative action against the perceived threat of Islam. It involves questions of identity and value in the west including the freedom of religion, cultural identity, the status of women and so on. It relates to whether a person who comes to live in the west should assimilate and adapt to the western way or is free to retain their rel…

The Relationship of the Elements of Mission

Assuming the elements of mission in the previous blog, here are some thoughts on the relationship of evangelism to the other elements of mission. All elements need to be involved together at all times to see effective mission. When one or other element is lacking, the progress of the mission is to some degree thwarted.All mission begins with points one and two above which lay the foundation from which the mission flows: the Spirit’s empowerment and leading to unconditional love, sacrifice (and so suffering) and service. This is the origin and heart that should drive all mission at all times.Mission in any context begins with engagement with people and lavish response to material need accompanied by the communication of the good news. These must continue in all contexts at all times. Any diminishing of either will see the effectiveness of mission diminished. Evangelism then is central to mission but must be set in the context of a whole strategy that embraces the fullness of the mission…

Evangelism (Evangelogy): The Elements of Mission

The Elements of Mission Mission is bigger than evangelism. The full mission of God in our view involves the restoration of all that has gone wrong through the Fall. It presupposes a rich vision of God creating this world out of love that would be free from evil in which all would be whole. Society would be based on goodness, love, peace and joy. The creation itself would be stable and cared for by those who people the world. God and people would live together in glorious harmony and peace would prevail at every level of the world. The mission then is the putting right of what has gone wrong. Central to this is the good news of God's intervention in Jesus to restore people's relationship with God, with each other and with the world.
That being the case, within this broad vision of mission: Believers are called by God to work with others to make Jesus Christ known through: -the empowerment of the Spirit and obedience to His leading[1] -unlimited unconditional love and sacrificial s…

Evangelism 1 (Evangelogy): A Definition of Evangelism

At present I am working with a small group of Laidlaw students with an interest in evangelism. The purpose of these Evangelism blogs which will follow on and off into the  future, is to develop some thoughts of evangelism. I call the group evangelogy, the study of sharing the gospel. I have coined this term in direct contrast to evangelism which I find a term that is now so loaded in different directions, that I want something else. I think using the combination of the roote evangel (good news) with logos may give this sense.

The first thing is to define evangelism. This is what we came up with:

Motivated by love, evangelism is the communication of the good news of the salvation and lordship of Jesus Christ with an invitation to every person to submit to God for the ultimate restoration of human society and God’s world.

Some Notes:
1. Motivated by love (2 Cor 5:14; Phil 1:5; Rom 5:6, 8; Jn 3:16; 1 Jn 4).

2. Evangelism: Based on the euangel – group of words which focus on the announceme…