Shalom is the Way it is Meant to Be

PEACE. It has the connotation in English of quiet tranquility and calm restfulness.But in my studies in the original languages of the Bible, I have discovered that the word "Peace" means a whole lot more than that. Isaiah foretold of the coming of the PRINCE of PEACE.Jesus Christ is ushering in a peace that is more than what the English word conveys. And he is using redeemed people to do it!God's purpose for every person, every society, everything in this world, is peace. The Hebrew … [Read more...]

The Gospel: Both “Social Action” and “Evangelism”

Ronald J. Sider, founder of Evangelicals for Social Action and author of Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger, has advocated for a more holistic vision of Christian ministry since 1973.He (along with Philip N. Olson and Heidi Rolland Unruh in their book, Churches That Make a Difference: Reaching Your Community with Good News and Good Works) wrote, “The whole gospel brings salvation in its fullest sense — forgiveness of sins, inner conversion of individuals in regeneration and sanctification, … [Read more...]

Subversive for the Common Good: Seek the Welfare of the City

God, through the prophet Jeremiah, not only tells those in the Babylonian exile to live holy lives, he also gives them a calling as they live in the midst of this oppressive empire. “Seek the welfare (Hebrew, shalom of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its flourishing you will find your flourishing.” (Jeremiah 29:7) As Brian Walsh and Sylvia Keesmaat wrote, “This call is profoundly subversive—right up there with ‘pray for those who persecute … [Read more...]

Holistic Mission for the Church

Christopher Wright, in addressing the Lausanne Committee, wrote, “Holistic mission includes the whole of what God calls and sends us to do. Evangelism without social action is not holistic mission. Likewise, social action without evangelism cannot be holistic mission either.” Wright is an Anglican clergyman, and his view is in keeping with The Anglican Communion, which has identified what they call “The Five Marks of Mission,”To proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom To teach, baptise and … [Read more...]

Knowing Always Means Doing

Blood:Water Mission and the Need to Do Something.Now that we know, what are we going to do?It has stopped surprising me how deeply that question is written into the ordinary rhythms of life. It is rare to read the front page of a newspaper, or scroll down the screen of an online news source, or have a conversation with anyone about anything, without bumping into our very human expectation that expects an integral relationship between knowing and doing.What did he know when? If she knew … [Read more...]

Models of a Civilization

We are at a moment in our nation where various ideologies as to how society should be structured are at odds. Which one should we embrace? Below are FIVE Models from which to choose. Which one do you think is best? Why?   The Constantinian Christian ModelThe Secularist ModelThe Libertarian ModelThe Christian Separatist ModelThe Christian "Sphere Sovereignty" Model    So which one of these do you prefer? What modifications would … [Read more...]

Restoring Homes to Restore a Community

Vocation and the High Calling of Construction.In this high-quality, five-minute video, Kimberly Renner explains how her vocation as the leader of a design-intensive construction company fulfills God's calling on her life. When other companies might be inclined to tear down an old house, the Renner Project chooses to restore it.[tvideo type="youtube" clip_id="okh2v7tQvtA" autoplay="false" controls="true" disablekb="false" fs="true" loop="false" rel="true" showinfo="true" … [Read more...]

Serving the City, Shaping the Political Community – David Kim

Our friends at the Center for Public Justice introduced the Kuyper Lecture in 1995 to promote public consideration of three important dynamics at work in today's world:Religion as a driving force - the deep, driving influence of competing religions in human society.Christ, the Light of the world - the comprehensive and inescapable claim of Jesus Christ on the world.An international Christian community - the strength and influence of international bonds of Christian … [Read more...]

Joy’s Story: The Value and Dignity of Work

David Spickard is the President and CEO of Jobs for Life (JfL), a global non-profit organization that engages and equips the local Church to address the impact of joblessness through the dignity of work. He wrote an amazing story at Live58 that explains why work is so integral to what it means to be human and to participate in God's mission in the world.Joy grew up in a home absent of work. Her mom got by on public assistance and her dad was nowhere to be found. Child support from her dad was … [Read more...]

Christian Faithful Presence in the Culture

If Christians are to be “missional,” then we must take seriously that our work, as a calling from God, is kingdom work. As such, it is like leaven that is mixed into the culture (Matthew 13:33), wherever we work and whatever we do. This “makes possible (the) renewal of each creational area from within, not without.” (Al Wolters, Creation Regained)James Davison Hunter, in his influential book, To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late Modern World, ca … [Read more...]