Ch 12 – Elements of an EmergingEcumenical Missionary Paradigm David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 368-510
Church& Mission Theology Shifts in Missionary Thinking “Missionary byitsverynature” Contextualisationthe Church-with- God’s Pilgrim People Others Sacrament, Sign, & Instrument Church&World Missio Dei Rediscovering theLocalChurch Creative Tension the Quest for Justice Mediating Salvation Mission as … Liberation Evangelism Inculturation Ministry by the Witness to People Whole People of of Other Living God Faiths Action in Hope Common Witness
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others 1. Mission as Church-with-Others David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 368-389
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Church & Mission 368-369 • Mission was one of the things that the church did for others. – High View of Church – Official Missionary Arm – Low View of Church – Unofficial Missionary Arm
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others The Church is the Mission, 369-372 • They are not separate things. • The “home base” is everywhere – Because “every Christian community is in a missionary situation” • “mission in partnership” – No guardianship of one church over another
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others “Missionary by its very nature” 372-373 • The church is “essentially” missionary • 1Peter 2:9 – The church exists in being sent • Missionary activity is not the “work of the church” but the “Church at work” – Not something done once things are strong at home but something that is done that defines the church • If asked: “Why still mission?” the response is: “Why still church?” • “Mission is essentially ecclesial” – Schumacher • Missionary Dimension (started w/ Newbigin) – Worshipping community; welcoming outsiders; pastors & members share ministry; equipped members; structurally pliable; not protective of select groups • Missionary Intention – Engages society with evangelism, justice, & peace
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others God’s Pilgrim People, 373-374 • Bible: WanderingpeopleofGod – onajourney • Only temporarily here • Assuchonlyneedsa destination &supportfortheroad • Itiscalledtoliveonearthsomethingofwhatitislikein God’s reign!
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Church & World 376-378 • Mission is “God’s turningtotheworld” – Thisisachangefrompreviousunderstandingsoftherelati onshipbetweentheChurch&theWorld – Beforetheworldwas hostile: • “… thechurchwasaworldonitsown …. Christian ministry &lifewas defined exclusively intermsof preaching., public worship, the pastorate, & charity. ‘Practicing’ Christianswere (&oftenstillare!) defined asregularchurch goers” (Schmitz in Bosch, 376)
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Church & World 376-378 – Nowitwas “Churchin solidarity withtheworld.” • Thechurchnowhadarelationshipwiththeworldthatwasthe mission! – We can’t separatethechurchfromthe mission; wealso can’t separatethechurchfromtheworldtowhichitissent! – “Thejoy&hope, the grief & anguish ofthepeopleofourtime, especiallyofthosewhoarepooror afflicted inmayway, arethejoy&hope, the grief & anguish ofthe followers ofChristaswell” Gaudium et Spes
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Church & World 376-378 – Whatdoesthismeanforthechurch? • Churchshouldbeawareofits provisional character – thegoalis God’s glory not necessarily abiggerchurch • Churchisnotthe kingdom – itpointsusthere&givesusaglimpse&tasteofit • Churchisnotjustawaitingroomforheaven – butisthe “community fortheworld.” • Churchisthe dwelling placeofGodtheSpirit Eph 2:22 – Assuchitisapartof God’s movementtowardtheworld!
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Church & World 376-378 • “If the Church attempts to sever itself from the involvement in the world& if its structures are such that they thwart the possibility of rendering a relevant service to the world, such structures have to be recognized as heretical” (378). – “We are a kingdom people not a church people.” – “Kingdom people seek first the Kingdom of God& its justice; church people often put church work above concerns of justice, mercy & truth. Church people thing about how to get people into the church; Kingdom people think about how to get the church into the world. Church people worry that the world might change the church; Kingdom people work to see the church change the world” (Snyder in Bosch, 378) • Church always brings good news.
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Rediscovering the Local Church 378-381 • Fundamental to the NT: – “The church-in-mission is, primarily, the local church everywhere in the world.” – “No local church should stand in a position of authority over against another local church.” – This, according to Bosch has been “for all practical purposes ignored during much of Church history.” • RC Pope as authority • “Protestant” Older vs Younger churches – “Paul founded churches while we found missions” (Roland Allen). – “Mission could not longer be viewed as one-way traffic from the West to the Third World; every church, everywhere, was understood to be in a state of mission” (379).
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Creative Tension 381-389 • 2 views of the church that are irreconcilable: – Church as sole bearer of the message of salvation; • vs – Church as illustration of God’s involvement with the world. • The two must exist in “creative tension”
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Creative Tension 381-389 2 views of the church that are irreconcilable: Church as sole bearer of the Church as illustration of God’s message of salvation involvement w/ the world • Church: partial realization of • Church: a pointer to how God God’s kingdom on earth acts in the world • Mission: getting people to • Mission: a “consciousness- move from death to life raiser” to guide people • Problem: No ethical thrust – toward the “humanization of focus tends to be on micro- society” ethics (numbers, religious • Problem: No soteriological living, individual morality) & depth – the church is too ignores macro-ethics (justice, identified w/ the world or is peace, equity). altogether eliminated.
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-OthersWorship & Connection to God Church Engaging Society The Church“The church is always & at the same time called out of the world & sent into the world” (WCC Faith & Order Commission in Bosch, 386).
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Creative Tension 381-389 • “It is only a church which goes out from its eucharistic centre, strengthened by word& sacrament & thus strengthened in its own identity, that can take the world on to its agenda …. At the same time, the Church can go out to the edges of society, not fearful of being distorted or confused by the worlds agenda, but confident& capable of recognizing that God is already there” (WCC 1983 in Bosch, 386)
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others Creative Tension 381-389 • The Church is imperfect • Ecclesia semperreformandaest – "the church is always to be reformed”
Ch 12 1. Mission as Church-with-Others 1. Mission as Church-with-Others • “Looking at itself through the eyes of the world, the church realizes that it is disreputable & shabby, susceptible to all human frailties; looking at itself through the eyes of the believers, it perceives itself as a mystery, as the incorruptible Body of Christ on earth. … It is this church, ambiguous in the extreme, which is ‘missionary by its very nature’, the pilgrim people of God, ‘in the nature of’ a sacrament, sign, & instrument, & ‘a most sure seed of unity, hope& salvation for the whole human race” (389).
Ch 12 2. Mission as Missio Dei David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 389-393
Ch 12 2. Mission as Missio Dei Defined • The Father sends the Son, the Father & the Son send the Spirit, & the Father, Son & Spirit send the church into the world. • “Mission is not primarily an activity of the church but an attribute of God. God is a missionary God.” • “There is a church because there is a mission, not vice versa” (390).
Ch 12 2. Mission as Missio Dei Defined • Mission = Missio Dei • Missions = Missiones Ecclesiae • “our missionary activities are only authentic insofar as they reflect participation in the mission of God” (391). • “The primary purpose of the missiones ecclesiae can therefore not simply be the planting of churches or the saving of souls; rather, it has to be service to the missio Dei, representing God in & over against the world. Pointing to God, holding up the God-child before the eyes of the world in a ceaseless celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany. In its mission, the church witnesses to the fullness of the promise of God’s reign & participates in the ongoing struggle between that reign & the powers of darkness& evil” (391).
Ch 12 2. Mission as Missio Dei Issues with Missio Dei • So what then is the role of the church? Does the church actually do anything or does God work on his own? Does he need our help? • “… neither the church nor any other human agent can ever be considered the author or bearer of mission” (392).
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 393-400
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation Salvation in Traditional Terms • Luke – End of poverty, discrimination, illness, demon possession, sin, etc. – In the here & now • Paul – Begins in this life but carries on in the next – A process that begins with an encounter with Christ but will only be completed in the Kingdom of God
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation Salvation in Traditional Terms • Greek Fathers – A gradual uplift of believers to a divine status • Medieval (RC & Protestant) Church – The redemption of individual souls in the hereafter, which would happen after death – Separation between person & work of Christ led to separation between works of service & sharing the Gospel • “Their purpose was to dispose people favorably toward the gospel, ‘soften them up,’ & thereby prepare the way for the work of the real missionary, namely, the one who proclaimed God’s word about eternal salvation.”
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation Salvation in the Enlightenment Paradigm • “Salvation now meant liberation from religious superstition, attention to human welfare, & the moral improvement of humanity” (395). • There were 2 responses to this: 1. To continue to define salvation in traditional terms; 2. To adopt this new definition & change Jesus into a good example.
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation Salvation in the Enlightenment Paradigm • “In a world in which people are dependent on each other & every individual exists within a web of inter-human relationships, it is totally untenable to limit salvation to the individual & his or her personal relationship with God…. Christians pray that the reign of God should come & God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven; it follows from this that the earth is the locus of the Christian’s calling & sanctification” (397).
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation Challenges to Defining Salvation • Traditional Definition: – To restrict salvation only to escape from God’s wrath & redemption of the individual soul is dangerously narrow. – It makes too clear a distinction between well-being & salvation. • Enlightenment Definition: – “The Christian gospel is not identical with the agenda of modern emancipation & liberation movements.”
Ch 12 3. Mission as Mediating Salvation So What do we do? • The scope of salvation needs to be more comprehensive than traditional models have said. • “Those who know that God will one day wipe away all tears will not accept with resignation the tears of those who suffer & are oppressed now. Anyone who knows that one day there will be no more disease can& must actively anticipate the conquest of disease in individuals & society now. Any anyone who believes that the enemy of God& humans will be vanquished will already oppose him now in his machinations in family& society. For all of this has to do with salvation” (400).
Ch 12 4. Mission as The Quest for Justice David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 400-408
Ch 12 4. Mission as The Quest for Justice Evangelism vs Social Responsibility • “Evil is not only in the human heart but also in social structures …. The mission of the church includes both the proclamation of the Gospel & its demonstration. We must therefore evangelize, respond to immediate human needs, & press for social transformation” (Wheaton 1983 Statement in Bosch, 407).
Ch 12 5. Mission as Evangelism David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 409-420
Ch 12 5. Mission as Evangelism Evangelism Defined “… that dimension & activity of the church’s mission which, by word & deed & in the light of the particular conditions & a particular context, offers every person & community, everywhere, a valid opportunity to be directly challenged to a radical reorientation of their lives, a reorientation which involves such things as deliverance from slavery to the world & its power; embracing Christ as Saviour & Lord; becoming a living member of his community, the church; being enlisted into his service of reconciliation, peace & justice, on earth; & being committed to God’s purpose of placing all things under the rule of Christ” (420).
Ch 12 6. Mission as Contextualization David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 420-432
Ch 12 6. Mission as Contextualization Contextual Theology Process (424-425) 1. Suspicion that Western Science, Philosophy, & Theology were actually designed to serve the interests of the West. 2. Refuses to see the world as a place that only has to be explained. The goal is to change it. 3. Emphasis on commitment to the poor & marginalized. 4. Credible theology is only done with those who suffer. 5. Emphasis on doing theology. 6. Hermeneutical Circulation – Experience – Reflection – Combine theory & practice
The Ambiguities of Contextualization (425-432)1. Isan affirmation thatGodhasturnedtowardtheworld.2. Involvestheconstructionofavarietyof “local theologies”3. Thereisnotonlythedangerof relativism, whereeach context forges itsown theology, tailor-made forthat specific context, butalsothedangerofaboslutismof contextualization4. Readingthesignsofthetimes5. Itisnottobetakenasthe sole &basicauthorityfor theological reflection.6. Itisnotmerelyadifferencebetween praxis &theory. Italsoincludespoiesis.7. Thebestmodelsholdin creative tensiontheoria, praxis &poiesis.
Ch 12 7. Mission as Liberation David J. Bosch, Transforming Mission: Paradigm Shifts in Theology of Mission, 432-447
• Liberation Theology isan attempt at contextualization
FromDevelopmentto Liberation (432- 435)• “All theologies of liberation &ofinculturation … are 3rd-world theologies or theologies ofthe 3rdworld within the 1stworld” (432).• Arose “to grapple withtheproblemsof systemic injustice” (432).• A response tothe “development/modernization model”
Postmodern Responses?• “We should never have transplanted Christianity to Asia without breaking the pot in which the plant came” (Pieris in Bosch, 478).• There are three responses (apart from “Atheism”) – Exclusivism – Fulfillment – Relativism