Friday 30 September 2022

Evangelical Alliance on Work

The Evangelical Alliance – in conjunction with the Lawyers’ Christian Fellowship – has produced a new suite of resources on ‘Living for Jesus at Work’.

More information can be found here, and several resources are available, including a research report, a collection of advice, wisdom and guidance, a practical pocketbook, with reminders and reflections for each day of the week, and a Bible study guide.

Monday 26 September 2022

Lausanne Global Analysis 11, 5 (September 2022)

The latest issue of Lausanne Global Analysis, from The Lausanne Movement, is available online from here, including pdfs of individual articles as below.

The summaries are taken from the Issue Overview by Loun Ling Lee.

Rupen Das

God’s Work of Transformation in the World: Defining ‘Transformation’ in the Invitational Mission of God

‘Nowhere in Scripture are we called to transform the world,’ he [Das] argues. However, he concludes that ‘while God does not call us to transform society, he calls us to be witnesses to the reality of the kingdom of God and the king… in the midst of a culture that robs people of life, by demonstrating compassion, being advocates for justice, and proclaiming a Redeemer in a sinful and broken world.

Héber Negrão

The Arts Are Not a Universal Language: Ethnodoxology and Integrating Local Arts in Worship

Héber Negrão highly recommends the usage of local arts in ‘culturally appropriate worship practices in missionary work.’ The development of ethnodoxology has championed the arts as ‘effective means of communication and, if correctly approached, they can powerfully convey the message of the gospel to the intended culture.’ However, the author notes that ‘there are aspects in every culture that can be used to glorify God, but also cultural expressions that were tainted when humankind sinned.’

Byron L. Spradlin

The Critical Role of Christian Artists and Musicians in Missions: The Need for Indigenous Christian Community Formation

Spradlin advocates for the formation of ‘indigenous Christian community’ where ‘culturally relevant expressions of faith and worship’ are respected. He writes, ‘Artistic communicators and artistic expression specialists stand central to developing indigenous Christian community formation, though often they are not being valued.’ The author’s passion to support and equip them led to ‘the launching of Artists in Christian Testimony International (A.C.T. Intl), a mission agency comprised of musicians and artists, and other creative ministry-initiators of all kinds, each of whom is committed to indigenous worship and Christian community formation.’ Many more mission agencies and churches with sufficient ‘ministry-facilitating structures’, and more ‘in-depth training, equipping those artists who feel God’s call to ministry’, are needed.

Michael Hart

Proclaiming an Offensive Gospel in Cultures of Peace: Building Plausibility Structures

With a special focus on cultures that value peace and tolerance, Michael Hart… argues that ‘proactive proclamation and deep relationships are integral to effectively sharing the good news.’ He proposes, first of all, that we work to understand such cultures, then bridge the gap with the people by ‘building plausibility structures – contexts, systems, or frameworks in which someone’s beliefs are credible’, and finally ‘provide the materials and blueprint’ to build these new structures. However, ‘it is important we recognize the building blocks of tolerance, respect, and affirmation in peace-loving cultures’ if we wish to proclaim the gospel effectively ‘by word and deed.’

Friday 16 September 2022

Christian History Magazine on Christian History in Images

The latest issue of Christian History Magazine is a special 40th anniversary edition devoted to the topic of ‘Christian History in Images’.

Here’s the issue blurb:

‘We serve a God who became incarnate in history. Founder Ken Curtis wrote in our very first issue: “An awareness of Christian History is one of the most neglected but necessary ingredients in the spiritual diet of Christians today.”

‘With this special 40th anniversary edition of Christian History, we seek to instill in you what Ken wanted for all of us – pride, as well as humility and repentance, in our shared story. Join us on a 100-page visual tour through two millennia of church history. This issue covers the main eras of the Church around the world with captivating images, concise summaries, and a removable fold-out timeline.’

The whole magazine is available as a 48.8 MB pdf here.

Sunday 4 September 2022

Mission Frontiers 44, 5 (September–October 2022)

The September–October 2022 issue of Mission Frontiers, published by the U.S. Center for World Mission, contains a number of articles devoted to ‘Healers and Preachers: Coming Together to Foster Movements in All Peoples’.

Here is the issue blurb, which sets the scene:

‘One thing is very clear from the ministry of Jesus. He not only cared for the spiritual needs of people but also their physical needs. Wherever He went, He healed the sick, cast out demons and proclaimed the gospel of the kingdom. If Jesus is our model for the ongoing mission of the Church, then we have no excuse for not seeking to heal the sick as well. Not only did Jesus model a ministry of caring for physical needs, He told His disciples to go and do likewise. As movements to Jesus spread to all the unreached peoples, so also should a reproducible and scalable system of indigenous health care, hygiene and nutritional training. This issue is all about overlapping healers and preachers. If we can finally strike the right balance and employ a holistic approach to fostering movements that involves ministry to the whole person, mind, body and spirit; it could be exactly what we need to fuel movements to Jesus in every tribe, tongue, people and nation.’

The issue is available here, from where individual articles can be downloaded, and the entire issue can be downloaded as a pdf here.

Thursday 1 September 2022

Christopher Ash on the Psalms

Every month, The Good Book Company make available digital versions of one of their books at no charge. This month (September 2022) it’s Psalms For You by Christopher Ash, which is available in exchange for an email address here.