When: June 9, 2023, 9:00 am - Friday
Where: Lamb & Scroll
Contemporary missiology is a multifaceted field of study that ranges from intercultural studies and interreligious dialogue to missional theology and evangelistic contextualization. This session features papers that represent these diverse facets: a liberationist reading of Pentecostal church growth in Latin America, a missional reflection on Isaiah’s vision of abundant life, an argument for the inclusion of comparative theology in missiology, and an analysis of the role social media plays in the evangelization of non-Christian young adults. This wide range of perspectives and concerns offers a feast of missiological reflection.
Misael Cornelio-Arias, Fuller Theological Seminary, “Mission, Purpose, and Community Participation in the Proclamation of a Liberating Gospel in the Power of the Spirit: A Latinex Perspective”
Latinex Pentecostals, a diverse group within the global movement, trace their roots to the 1906 Azusa Street revival. This paper identifies mission, purpose, and community involvement as key growth factors. Mission is driven by a pneumatological perspective, while purpose stems from transformative encounters with the Spirit. Community involvement embodies the missio Dei, with Latinex churches serving as communities of the Spirit in marginalized contexts. These elements contribute to their growth and societal influence as they proclaim a liberating gospel in the power of the Spirit. The paper argues that these elements have fueled their expansion and increased their influence in society.
David Baer, Theological Education Initiative, “Fullness and Deficit as Eschatological and Missional Values: The View from the Book called Isaiah”
The book called Isaiah sustains a peculiar emphasis upon a handful of expressions that privilege fullness and deficit as evidence of shalom and dysfunction respectively. When these values are splashed upon the book’s canvas of expectation, one glimpses Isaiah’s “high and holy One” drawing history and its nations away from deficit and towards a fullness that approximates to a later prophet’s discourse on “abundant life.” This paper argues that we place ourselves in good company when we adjust our vision so that deficit and fullness are core measures of what is wrong with our world and what Isaiah’s God and Jesus’s Father is setting aright.
Travis Myers, Saint Louis University, “Comparative Theology and Why It Matters”
As a mode of theological reflection and discourse, comparative theology intentionally utilizes non-Christian religious, philosophical, or cultural texts as resources for Christian theological construction. This paper outlines some of the features of the field as an inter-religiously comparative way of doing theology and as a specifically theological way of engaging in comparison. What are the potential benefits of such a theological approach in relation to Christian mission? What are the limits? This paper argues for a broad notion of Christian mission that allows for and even necessitates a place for comparative theology.
Glen Bowman, Grand Canyon University, “The Influence of Faith Sharing through Social Media on Young Adults who do not Identify Themselves as Christians”
This presentation explores how young adults who do not identify themselves as Christians describe the influence that Christian faith sharing through social media exerts on their thoughts and behaviors. Data collection and analysis occurred using a qualitative descriptive method with fifteen interviews and one focus group, followed by thematic analysis. The results of this study can assist mission-minded Christians to better understand non-Christian young adults, have more productive interfaith dialogues, and evangelize more effectively and less offensively.
Greg McKinzie, Lipscomb University, Convener
- Misael Cornelio-Arias, Fuller Theological Seminary, “Mission, Purpose, and Community Participation in the Proclamation of a Liberating Gospel in the Power of the Spirit: A Latinex Perspective”
- David Baer, Theological Education Initiative, “Fullness and Deficit as Eschatological and Missional Values: The View from the Book Called Isaiah”
- Travis Myers, Saint Louis University, “Comparative Theology and Why It Matters”
- Glen Bowman, Grand Canyon University, “The Influence of Faith Sharing through Social Media on Young Adults who do not Identify Themselves as Christians”