Mission Study

Moving in the Spirit: Called to Transforming Discipleship: Reflections from the Vantage Points of the Marginalized People

Abstract

“Mission from the margins” is neither a mere perspectival approach nor an option but an inevitable way of being church in God's mission. Likewise, the marginalized people are neither a broad category of people on the fringes of the society nor mere objects of charity and victims of circumstances. They are prophets and pathfinders indicting the world for its injustice through their lives of suffering and striving for its transformation through their struggles. As signs of hope testifying to the movement of the Spirit amidst despair and death, they help us to see God's mission not as a mere religious activity but as a spirituality of resistance and transformation for the sake of life and God's world. Reclaiming discipleship from the vantage of the marginalized, therefore, offers an opportunity for the churches to rediscover themselves afresh from being mere communities of believers and power structures to networks of partners for God's justice, participating in the larger struggles for the transformation of the world. As the gospels tell us, Jesus did not commission his disciples to call people to a belief system but to a covenantal relationship through a vocation of striving for the realization of God's reign. Such a sense of vocation is possible only when there is a radical change in Christian self‐understanding. It involves, first, interrogating and reimagining the ways in which churches affirm and practice their faith; second, leaving aside their captivity to certain belief systems and turning toward Jesus of Nazareth to teach the way – to be active partners with God rather than being passive believers; third, appropriating discipleship beyond the language and sphere of transformation of persons; and fourth, learning from and being enriched by the visions and resources of the marginalized in living out the call to be one in God's mission of transformation of the world.

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The Role of the American Board in the World

Bicentennial Reflections on the Organization's Missionary Work, 1810-2010: A new book edited by Clifford Putney and Paul T. Burlin

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Missiology: Appendix

Appendix

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Missiology: notes

Notes

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Missiology: Mission as Reconciliation

A focusing biblical text:  Revelation 21: 1, 5

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more….And the one who was seated on the throne said, ‘See, I am making all things new.”

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Missiology: Mission as Economic Liberation and Cultural Identity

A focusing biblical text: Luke 4: 16-21 

“When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was his custom.  He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him.  He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:  ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor.  He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”  And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down.  The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him.  Then he began to say to them, ‘Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’”

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Toward More Mutual Relationships in the Global Church

A focusing biblical text:  Philippians 2: 5-8
“Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death – even death on a cross.”

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God's Mission in the World

 “The Church in Mission is the Church for Others”

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Missiology: Missio Dei (God's Mission)

A focusing biblical text: John 17: 20-21

“I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one.  As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.”

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Notable Appearances of the ABCFM in U.S. and World History

Written by Clifford Putney

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