Monday, November 17, 2008

Class I'm Taking RIght Now - Ministry in the Postmodern Matrix

Hello friends. I'm in Pasadena, California, taking a Doctor of Minstry class on "Ministry in the Postmodern Matrix" at Fuller Theological Seminary. Originally, Brian McLaren taught this course.

My teacher is Keith Matthews, who used to teach this class with McLaren and who was a pastor with McLaren at Cedar Ridge Community Church. Keith has a great spirit about him. I think that it will be a great class.

We'll be looking at what is going on in our culture, and how to do ministry effectively today in light of our culture.

After this week of class, Becki and I are going on vacation. This should be a great two weeks. I love learning, and I love my wife!

3 comments: said...

So I'm a little jealous.

jeremy said...

Our minister brings up McLaren quite a bit. I really like the title of one of his books: "Adventures in Missing the Point." I'd like to read it one of these days.

I hope you're dodging the fires and enjoying the warm weather!

Anonymous said...

I’ve read some of your posts on postmodernism and culture. And I’ve heard people talk about it. All very interesting. (and sorry for being late commenting on this but I came across it a few days late so don’t know if you’ll even read it but i’ll post anyway))

While I understand what you are trying to say, that is the same thing Paul said: “I have become all things to all men, so that by all means I might save some” (I Cor 9:22 NIV), there are some concerns in what I have observed of the application of this principle. With increasing frequency, the “message” is being changed along with the “method”. This is what Christians need to be careful about. Don’t you think?

The message is God’s message, not ours, and we have no right to change it in any way for any reason. His message is VERY positive=His love for us in giving Jesus and His desire that none should be lost. (John 3:16 & I Tim 2:4) But there IS a flip side of that and in today’s culture, people don’t like to hear that. (and from what I read in Scripture, cultures throughout history have never liked to hear the negative part and many of God’s messengers who told both sides lost their lives)

The balance that we find in Scripture is what we need to present, all of it. In the past, teaching in the Church gave people a false sense of condemnation by leaving out the love and grace part of salvation. Today a false sense of security is being promoted by leaving out the requirements for salvation and the consequences of bad choices in our lives. (2 Tim 4:3 comes to mind) Both are distortions of God’s word.

I think we need to keep our focus on teaching all of the truth while also giving consideration to the audience being taught. By teaching all of God’s truth, Christians can transform the world; the world cannot be allowed to transform the Church. The power is in the Word, not the method. Your thoughts?