Showing posts from March, 2022

Belong, Believe, Become (the Journey with Jesus)

Jesus Discourses with His Disciples by Tissot (public domain via Wikimedia Commons) Several years ago I attended a conference in which a presenter asked this question: "How do we minister to the typically post-modern, post-Christian younger generations?" He went on to note that the typical evangelical presentation of the gospel is not connecting with this cohort---a presentation that goes something like this:     Behave:  change the way you live---repent---act like you belong here  Believe:  change the way you think---have faith---believe like one of us  Belong:  because you have repented and now believe like we do, God forgives you and makes you his child---you are now reconciled/saved---you are now welcome here       Another presenter suggested that we change the way we present the gospel to follow this pattern: Belong:  you are accepted by God and by us, Jesus has included you in his life by grace---you are loved and accepted unconditionally---you belong Believe:  now beli

How can we know a God who is transcendent?

In  Regarding Karl Barth, Toward a Reading of His Theology , Trevor Hart addresses key elements in the incarnational Trinitarian theology of Karl Barth. One of those elements concerns human knowledge of God, which according to Barth is not available through nature (the created order). According to Barth, this is so because God, being transcendent  (not of the created order) can be known only through his self-revelation, which God has given to us in and through the incarnation of the eternal Word (Logos) of God. Barth taught that it is in the humanity of the incarnate Son of God, and through our encounter with the human God, by the Spirit, that we, by grace, are given an accurate revelation of God, and thus are able to know and relate to God. In short, knowledge of God is a miracle that comes through the incarnation and the event of our encounter with the incarnate Son of God. In pointing out that God is transcendent (differentiated) from the world, Barth is not saying that God is not i

Gospel Reverb: sharing the good news of Jesus

I wish to recommend to Surprising God blog readers the Gospel Reverb  podcast, which like this blog is sponsored by Grace Communion International. Gospel Reverb  is hosted by Anthony Mullins, who serves as Regional Director in GCI's Southeast US Region. Published monthly,  Gospel Reverb  features interviews with theologians and pastors whose teaching and preaching is grounded in the incarnational Trinitarian faith addressed on this blog. Each edition of Gospel Reverb explores a series of pericopes of Scripture passages, following the readings set out in the Revised Common Lectionary. In that way, the podcast not only teaches the Trinitarian faith in accordance with Holy Scripture, it provides a resource for preachers to use in preparing sermons that exegete the passages addressed. You can listen to  Gospel Reverb  at  or on Apple Podcast, Google Play, Spotify and other places where podcasts are published. For an excerpt of a recent edi