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Showing posts from February, 2014

Empathy and sharing as transformation

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The Relational Pastor, part 2For other posts in this series, click on a number: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11,12, 13, 1415.


In this series of posts, we're exploring Andrew Root's book, The Relational Pastor: Sharing in Christ by Sharing Ourselves. As we saw in part 1, his thesis is that relationship is the goal of Christian ministry given that humans are relational beings, having been created by the tri-personal, relational God in his image. This being so, it is in and through relationship that we encounter the God-man Jesus Christ from whose humanity we receive our true personhood (our "new humanity" in Christ). For that reason, Root insists that in ministry (as in all of life), relationships should be viewed as ends in themselves, not mere means to some other end (see p19). In unpacking this thesis, Root emphasizes two vital and related concepts: empathy and sharing as transformation.

Empathy

Empathy is vital in effective ministry because it is by and through emp…

Relationship: the goal of Christian ministry

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The Relational Pastor, part 1For other posts in this series, click on a number: 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 78, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 1415.

In a post on this blog last year, I referred to the work of Trinitarian theologian Andrew Root. I return now to his excellent writing--this time to explore his book, The Relational Pastor: Sharing in Christ by sharing ourselves (IVP 2013). In this challenging, yet practical book, Root examines the topic of pastoral ministry in the light of the biblically grounded, Incarnational Trinitarian Theology of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (along with Karl Barth, T.F. Torrance and others).

A key theological emphasis of Bonhoeffer's concerned the ongoing ministry of the Incarnate Son of God, Jesus Christ, who continues to share our humanity. Indeed it is in and through the person of Jesus, who is fully God and fully human, that God and humanity are permanently united. And through this "hypostatic union," Jesus shares in the being of every human--truly, he is "G…

Get in the game: union & participation

In thevideo below, GCI president Joseph Tkach provides a helpful analogy from the game of baseball concerning our life in Christ, which involves both union and participation. Put me in coach!

What happened at Pentecost?

On the day of Pentecost following Jesus' crucifixion, death, resurrection and ascension, the Holy Spirit moved with power among Jesus' followers who were gathered for prayer (Acts 1:14; 2:1). Miraculous signs and wonders resulted, including some disciples being enabled to speak to the crowd of festival pilgrims in languages those disciples did not know (Acts 2:2-4). Baffled by this, some of the assembled pilgrims proclaimed that Jesus' followers must be drunk (Acts 2:5-13). In reply, Peter said this:
"...Let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. These men are not drunk, as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 'In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams'" (Acts 2:14-17). What did Peter mean by indicating that on this day of Pentecost, God, in accord wi…