Living Under the Reign of God: Gospel, Church & Culture in a Postmodern Context Baptist Bible Seminary December 2004
The Church’s Cultural Captivity 1. Loss of eschatological urgency… 2. Framed in the normalcy of the present and not the coming kingdom… 3. Derives its status and forms of power from the world… 4. Seduced to turn the world into the kingdom that avoids the cross, conversion, goodnews!...
Lessons to be Learned in the Crisis of a Crumbling Worldview • Need to abandon just a privatized faith for participation in a radical kingdom community... • Church - culture relationship is not sponsoral, religious servants of, citizens rooted in a foreign land… • Need to recover the gospel, church & the world.
Post-Captivity Evangelism • Evangelism must be seen as invitation to enter the Kingdom and thus the church. • Converts need to be presented the implications of entering a new race of men. • Can no longer assume that enculturated people have a common understanding of language with us. • Without imposing the gospel, we need to trade on the moral point of contact for the gospel.
Point of Contact for the Gospel • Inescapable - Sensus Deitatis • All men know their guilt (worthy of death) & that they are creatures • Agency of Word and Spirit in regeneration • Epistemologically - nothing in common • Metaphysically - everything in common • Moral Point of Contact - Judgment, Repent
Implications for Evangelism & Apologetics 1. God redemptively engages people in their history by the grace of the Holy Spirit. 2. There must be a faith community that demonstrates that the gospel is true in practice and thus in reality. 3. By the use of redemptive history we must show the narrative is compelling & coherent on its own terms. 4. Our faith narrative must be presented as encompassing all of life experience. 5. We must honestly & fully hear other faiths. 6. The gospel should be presented without resort to verbal violence against others.
The Church: an Alternative Culture Matthew 5:13-16 • Salt of the Earth – to become foolish • Light of the World – represent kingdom salvation to the world • City Set on a Hill – issue is seen or not seen • Live in Such a Way that the Kingdom Will Be Manifested
Kingdom and the Church Kingdom Church
Kingdom & Church Church Mission Under the Reign of God • Represents the kingdom as its community…(koinonia) • Serves the Kingdom as its servants… (diakonia) • Announces the Kingdom as its messenger…(kerygma)
Post-Foundational Theology • Evangelicalism’s commitment to Enlightenment Captivity… • New approach to post-foundational theology (Grenz, et al)… • Emerging Church… • Rethinking Biblical Theology from the perspective of the Biblical Metanarrative…
Theology as a Bounded Set Ten Loci as the Boundary Doctrine
Theology as a Centered Set Centered Community
Theology as a Bounded/Centered Set Interpreted Biblical Metanarrative Christ Centered Coherence
Key Tenets of the Emerging Church • Recover aspects of liturgy that was jettisoned by modernity… • Remove Christianity from its cerebral captivity as propositions to believe… • Replace the cognitive with the aesthetic & embrace abduction while rejecting both deduction and induction… • Truth springs forth from relationships and is always akin to feelings…
Living Under the Reign of God: Gospel, Church & Culture in a Postmodern Context The End Baptist Bible Seminary December 2004