There are within evangelicalism today, Tim Chester claims, two apparently competing gospels offering alternative views on not only the nature of the gospel (for individuals or for society?) and the meaning of Jesus death of cross (soteriological or political?) but also the mission and the role of the church today (proclamation or social action). These two gospels, are in fact one gospel. What is required for us though is to better understand how these two emphases are integrally related to one another in forming one gospel.
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The #MeToo campaign has given much-needed space for victims of abuse and harassment to be heard. That there is a #ChurchToo tag that is gaining impetus should highlight the degree to which a low view of women and the impulse to protect men is also found in leading Christian institutions.
Isn’t all this talk about social justice and reforming society simply just the social gospel all over again? The threat of the social gospel has among evangelicals often been used as a dismissive tactic to equate any talk of social justice with a lack of gospel fidelity. What is the social gospel? What is the Great Reversal? Can the Kingdom of God exist outside of the Church?
Isn’t pursuing social justice a slippery slope to loosing the gospel?
South Africa is one of the most unequal countries in the world. These are deep seated gospel issues, and if anyone really cares about the people of God then they will have something to say about the negative effects of varying socio-economic issues and the impact they have on the people of God.
Some of us might try to fight it but there is something psychologically compelling about the somewhat arbitrary changing of the calendar year that resonates with our desire for change. Amidst all the new gym memberships, course enrollments, and best intentions here are five relatively simple ways in which you might take some steps towards living more justly in 2018.
In this episode we discuss Gentrification with Tristan Pringle from Level Ground. Dealing with questions such as What is Gentrification? Isn’t Urban Renewal a Good Thing? Who is included and excluded? What role should the market play in determining value and morality? What role does the gospel play in shaping our response to issues of gentrification? And what role should the church play in assisting communities affected by gentrification?
The Old Testament time of Jubilee is a beautiful picture of a different way of living among God’s people where the generational cycles of poverty are broken and interrupted through a series of intentional, deliberately different ways of living economically, socially and spiritually among God’s people. In this first of a two-part talk John Scheepers explores how the institution of Jubilee was designed to break those inter-generational cycles of poverty and exclusion as well as the implications for us today.
Jesus death on the cross is the comprehensive Jubilee event. It is through the death of Jesus that victory and liberation is brought to all of creation. The cross is not that which replaced the Jubilee (as if all the socio-political and economic aspects simply drop away leaving only a spiritual significance) it is the fulfillment of the Jubilee including the total redemptive accomplishment and final liberation from all that enslaves and oppresses humanity and creation.
In this episode David Cloete and John Scheepers tackle the question: Why must it always be about race? Dealing with issues such as living in a racialized society, being colourblind and biblical diversity they explore what the Bible has to say about questions such as What is wrong with seeing race? Why do black people always play the race card? and Isn’t there really only one race, the human race?
Does the gospel really make a difference in a divided and restless South Africa? What if the solution was not another radical edgy or hot take on the contemporary situation? Four ordinary Biblical injunctions which could radically change everything with a bit of consistent application.
How do we theologically understand violence? Is there biblical warrant for a broader definition of violence? What does it mean to be peacemakers in a context of both repeated, overt acts of violence and insidious systemic violence? How does the gospel shape our understanding of and reaction to both behavioural and systemic violence? These are questions and concerns addressed in this talk.