Friday, November 4, 2011

New Directions in Preaching (2)

In planning my talks I have decided to use two Scriptures which from the beginning will act as a corrective to discussion about where preaching is going - Eph. 4: 12,13 and 1 Pet 2: 4-12. (It's always good to have a Scripture base!) Many have analyzed culture change and tried to sum up implications for the church.

Stanley Grenz sums up how the gospel should move in current culture changes in his Primer on PostModernism:
From focusing on the individual - to recognize the community of faith.
From rational certainty alone - to intellectual encounter within human experience.
From emphasis on uniformity - to celebration of diversity that focuses on local stories.

Though oversimplifying, I believe that the 'modern' church of the latter twentieth century has so often focused on the individual with strong commitment to rational certainty and an emphasis on uniformity (especially denominational churches with national programs!) But, in the challenge of post-somethings culture we have fresh opportunity to move towards a profounder corporate expression of our faith - to grow in community with authenticity as we seek to live together as (dare we believe!) a maturing people - formed more like the body of Jesus Christ.

You will understand my desire to keep Eph. 4 and 1 Pet.2 in mind as I help people explore what it means to preach today. Do we now have far greater possibility of living out these truths in community than for many decades?

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