December 6, 2022

We tend to start with a limited set of atonement theories and overlook the more fundamental elements that are common to each theory. When discussing the Bible’s teaching on atonement, we “lose at the starting line.” Read more

November 29, 2022

In The Cross in Context: Reconsidering Biblical Metaphors for Atonement, I divide the chapters into three major parts.[1] The Contexts of Biblical Atonement Section one has five chapters. The first chapter explains why all atonement theories are contextualized. We are often ignorant of the role that context plays in shaping our theories of atonement. Our cultural context narrows the focus and scope of our theological questions. Because of our historical situation, we might ask too much of our theories. These... Read more

November 22, 2022

Today is finally here! After years of labor, The Cross in Context: Reconsidering Biblical Metaphors for Atonement is officially published!! (This is the second book that I’ve released this fall. Seeking God’s Face was published in September.) As a way of introducing the book to you, it’s fitting that I post an adapted excerpt from the Introduction. Please share the news with others! Three Goals of This Book The Cross in Context has three interconnected purposes.[1] First, it attempts to guard... Read more

November 15, 2022

I’m honored that Joshua McNall accepted my request to write the foreword to my forthcoming book The Cross in Context: Reconsidering Biblical Metaphors for Atonement. You might have read his book The Mosaic of Atonement: An Integrated Approach to Christ’s Work (2019). In this post, I share his Foreword and the book’s Table of Contents. See my previous post for an introduction to the book, several endorsements, and an excerpt. Foreword (by Joshua McNall) “Say Shibboleth!” Unfortunately, that menacing line... Read more

November 8, 2022

For years, I wanted to write a book about the atonement. In just a few weeks, it’ll finally be published, and you can pre-order it today! Read more

November 1, 2022

We previously considered several studies that highlight the benefits of “broad thinking” on creativity. Scholars note how a “broad perceptual scope” of attention fosters original thinking. Non-Western cultures often have broader “perceptual scopes” but other cultural factors inhibit certain types of creativity. How might such observations impact contextualization? What do these findings suggest about the value and use of biblical theology? I’ll briefly touch on two points worth discussing. Contextualization Requires Broad Thinking Without belaboring the point, I’ll reiterate an... Read more

October 29, 2022

My jaw dropped. I have never seen Chinese leaders act in such a way. However, last week, Xi Jinping gave a full demonstration (against Hu Jintao) of the tactics used during the cultural revolution. At the recent Chinese Communist Party’s twice-a-decade meeting, the congress convened to anoint President Xi to a third term, an unprecedented since the death of Mao Zedong. The move was made possible because Xi removed term limits several years back in preparation for this year’s gathering.... Read more

October 25, 2022

Have you ever thought about the link between cognitive psychology, Eastern thinking, and biblical theology? Yeah, me too. For everyone else, let me share with you how psychological studies yield significant insights that can help us think through contextualization, whether for missions or theology. Broad versus Narrow Focus I’ll begin by summarizing a study that has since been replicated several times by others. Researchers gave participants one of two maps. In the first group, people received a state map (e.g.,... Read more

October 18, 2022

To bridge the gap between theologians and missionaries, we need imagination. Here are ideas about what an integrated approach might look like. Read more

October 11, 2022

Why do theologians and missionaries rarely engage each other's work? Wouldn't collaboration help everyone? Here are at least three reasons why the chasm exists. Read more


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