Tag Archives: missional

Introduction to By the Waters of Babylon

Introduction to By the Waters of Babylon

The following is an excerpt from By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture by Scott Aniol (Kregel, 2015). By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion. On the willows there we hung up our lyres. For there our captors required of us songs, and our… Continue Reading

Must We “Translate” the Gospel?

Must We “Translate” the Gospel?

The “missional” movements are not really fundamentally different from the middle-class, pedestrian “church growth” movements of 25 years ago. They all seem to assume that accommodation is something that we do as we reach out to others. This is confused. via Must We “Translate” the Gospel? | The Heidelblog. Continue Reading

The Mission of Worship: An Assessment of the Missional Church Movement’s Impact Upon Evangelical Worship Philosophy and Practice

The Mission of Worship: An Assessment of the Missional Church Movement’s Impact Upon Evangelical Worship Philosophy and Practice

The following is the paper I presented yesterday at the national meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society: PDF Audio Version Most church leaders readily recognize that God has tasked churches with several different purposes, yet how those purposes work together has equally mystified them. One of the most potentially difficult ministry relationships to reconcile has… Continue Reading

The significance of worship for the Great Commission

The significance of worship for the Great Commission

This article first appeared on The Artistic Theologian, the online theological journal of Southwestern Seminary’s School of Church Music. The Lord Jesus Christ gave the church its commission before he ascended to his Father: Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of… Continue Reading

Two messages on the Church’s mission

Two messages on the Church’s mission

There is a lot of talk today about being “missional,” and some of it has caused confusion or even derailed churches from following their actual mission. Here are two recent messages on the subject: A message I preached last month at Bethany Bible Church in Hendersonville, NC – “The Mission Jesus Has Given Us” A… Continue Reading

Ultimate and Subordinate Ends

Ultimate and Subordinate Ends

This entry is part 1 of 5 in the series Worship and the Missio Dei You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

There is a lot of talk today about the Missio Dei–the mission of God. God is a sending God, the principle states, and the church–including its worship–is but part of that mission. Worship, therefore, serves mission. This series will evaluate this claim and articulate a biblical relationship between worship and mission. There is perhaps a no… Continue Reading

The Relationship Between Holy Culture and Unholy Culture Should be One of Witness

The Relationship Between Holy Culture and Unholy Culture Should be One of Witness

This entry is part 18 of 20 in the series Christ the Sanctifier of Behavior You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The sixth conclusion drawn from the idea that culture is behavior is that the relationship between holy culture essay order and unholy culture should be one of witness. The separatist sees the relationship between the church and “unholy” culture as one of complete separation. Two-kingdom advocates also see the two as completely distinct but encourage… Continue Reading

The Missional Approach to Culture

The Missional Approach to Culture

This entry is part 11 of 20 in the series Christ the Sanctifier of Behavior You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The missional church movement is certainly not a monolithic group; yet characteristics of this movement are strikingly similar to characteristics of the transformationalist approach to culture.1 Several authors have suggest that the missional church movement is essentially transformationalist including Michael Goheen and2 Mark Snoeberger.3 Like transformationalists, missional authors recognize anthesis between the church and its surrounding culture; but… Continue Reading

Scripturally, “Culture” is Simply the “Behavior” of a People

Scripturally, “Culture” is Simply the “Behavior” of a People

This entry is part 8 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

If there is any concept of the anthropological/missional idea of “culture” in the NT, it is the idea of “way of life.” A people’s culture is their behavior and their conduct. Several important implications may be drawn from this analysis. First, NT authors explain cultural differences between various people groups as differences of belief and… Continue Reading

Are NT “Behavior”-related Terms Equivalent to “Culture”?

Are NT “Behavior”-related Terms Equivalent to “Culture”?

This entry is part 6 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

So far I have argued that neither “race”-related terms and “world”-related terms in the NT approximate the anthropological idea of “culture.” A third category of NT terms that could parallel the contemporary concept of culture is terms related to behavior. Such terms include terms most often translated as “behavior, “conduct,” or “way of life.” Among… Continue Reading

Are NT “Race”-related Terms Equivalent to “Culture”?

Are NT “Race”-related Terms Equivalent to “Culture”?

This entry is part 4 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The question before us is this: are there any New Testament terms that are equivalent to the contemporary notion of “culture”? At least three separate categories of NT Greek terms possibly parallel the more contemporary idea of culture. The first grouping includes terms translated with the English words “race,” “tribe,” “nation,” “people” or “languages.” These ideas are… Continue Reading

The Missional Understanding of “Culture”

The Missional Understanding of “Culture”

This entry is part 5 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last time I argued that the contemporary idea of “culture” came to being within discussions of modern anthropology It was in this anthropological climate that the missional idea of culture took shape. Charles H. Kraft acknowledges that the missional idea of culture draws from cultural anthropology: “When it comes to the analysis of such cultural… Continue Reading

Common Missional Definitions of Culture

Common Missional Definitions of Culture

This entry is part 3 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Likely the most influential early evangelical definition of culture comes from Lesslie Newbigin who claims that culture is “the sum total of ways of living built up by a human community and transmitted from one generation to another.”1 Darrell Guder cites this definition early in his influential Missional Church,2 thus revealing its impact upon later missional thinking… Continue Reading

The Missional Church and Culture

The Missional Church and Culture

This entry is part 1 of 8 in the series Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The missional church movement has significantly influenced the evangelical church in recent years, especially their philosophy of evangelism and worship (see my recent series on this subject here). Missional advocates argue that the church is part of the missio Dei—the mission of God—and thus must see its ministries as fitting within that mission. Essential to… Continue Reading

The Good and the Bad of Missional Worship

The Good and the Bad of Missional Worship

This entry is part 12 of 12 in the series Missional Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

There is little doubt that the missional church movement has been influential in evangelical churches, and that it continues to grow. Having surveyed the history and theology of this important movement and specifically its impact upon the worship of the evangelical church, the question remains as to whether this influence has been beneficial or not.… Continue Reading

The Incarnational Mode of Missional Worship

The Incarnational Mode of Missional Worship

This entry is part 11 of 12 in the series Missional Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

With regard to the missional movement’s understanding of Christendom, it is important to recognize that they saw what happened during this period as little more than the church contextualizing worship to the dominant culture of the civilization. Since Christianity happened to be the dominant religion of the western world, the church was able to easily… Continue Reading

Twenty-first Century Western Post-Modernism as Missional Worship Context

Twenty-first Century Western Post-Modernism as Missional Worship Context

This entry is part 10 of 12 in the series Missional Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

According to missional authors, the Christendom model significantly affects how the average 21st century American church practices worship. During the Christendom period, the church dominated the culture, and therefore the forms used in worship were in many ways indistinguishable from the forms of Western culture. According to Murray, “Sunday” as a holy day, the clergy/laity… Continue Reading

The Missionary Imperative of Missional Worship

The Missionary Imperative of Missional Worship

This entry is part 9 of 12 in the series Missional Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Part of the difficulty in attempting to synthesize a philosophy of missional worship is that many different groups have adopted the term missional to describe their approach to church ministry, not all of which ascribe to the fundamental characteristics of the missional movement. For example, while missional church advocates discussed in this series repudiate an… Continue Reading