Theological Education and Scripturally-based Discipleship: Critical Distinctions

Modern theological education, as generally understood and practiced today, is a wholly Western concept. Yet, over the past century and a half, it has become a global prescription. The reason for this is the successful expansionism of the Western missionary movement.

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Intercultural Mutuality

Intercultural mutuality is a missiological perspective for interpreting and relating to intercultural dynamics, in particular between Western missionary agencies and African contextual agencies (e.g. churches etc).

  • The text below provides an academic summary
  • The concept is explored in a graphical presentation here.

Intercultural mutuality embraces a missional stance that looks beyond colonialism, post-colonialism, independence and even inter-dependence and partnership, as typically understood.

Intercultural mutuality implies a working relationship between people of different cultures, based upon a mutual inter-cultural appreciation and compatibility of gifts, talents, characteristics and culture—all of which is rooted in a shared, vocational commitment to serving God’s eternal purpose, the missio Dei.

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Christianity is not a religious option

Christianity is not a religious option: it is a call to service.

What we think of as Christianity is an historic faith. A faith focused upon a series of stories, describing real, historic events that took place, within the larger history of the world. And the objective reality, at the heart of all these stories, is the calling, the “election” of a people — firstly the Jews, then from amongst every ethnos — every tribe, people, language and nation (I.e. the Gentiles) — to serve God’s eternal purpose: the renewal of creation. Continue reading “Christianity is not a religious option”

Was Asian tsunami God’s judgement?

Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, reportedly pointedout that the tsunami “could well test people’s faith in God.” This theme was picked up by an interesting article in an online BBC Magazine, which represented the views of a Christian, a Hindu, a Buddhist, a Muslim and an Atheist, (why not a Jewish viewpoint, however?) “coming to terms with events in SE Asia.”

Appropriately enough, in our supposedly postmodern, pluralistic age, the final and probably most balanced comment made upon the article was by a pagan, urging people of all faiths and beliefs to continue in them, as well as in the strength of the human spirit. Compelling though this argument is, however, the tsunami tragedy almost inevitably forces faith into a “position.”

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Nakuru, Kenya, 2000

Anthony, Josephine, en route to Nakuru, from Nairobi airport

In December 2000, Sarah and I flew to visit Pastor Anthony and his wife Josephine, who had organised a conference in their church, in Nakuru, in the uplands of Kenya, inviting me to teach on the subjects of Prayer, Intercession and Overcoming Powers of Darkness.

Neither Sarah nor I had ever visited the African continent before. As our plane began to descend into Bujumbura airport (in Burundi), en route to Nairobi, a loud piercing, grating noise was emitted along with sparks of white light which could be seen out of the left hand side windows. An electrical fault? Something exploding from within the hold? People speculated about these things, as the plane came to rest safely and passengers for Bujumbura disembarked. Continue reading “Nakuru, Kenya, 2000”