Discerning Mission

Responses to 'Love Wins'

Pastor and author Rob Bell has stirred the conversational pot in recent months with his newest book, Love Wins.

Responses to the book have varied widely, as this sampling of reviews reveals.

Bell's fellow emergent church leaders have also weighed in, as has Luther Seminary's own Dr. David Lose.

Some congregations have begun engaging Love Wins in small group studies.  Here a Luther seminarian shares the talking points they found helpful in discussing the book with congregation members.

Have

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Sin, grace and popular culture

Faith as a way of life - Christian Scharen

Dr. Christian Scharen, in his book Faith as a Way of Life: A Vision for Pastoral Leadership, writes compellingly about the challenges of discerning God in the midst of popular culture.

Unlike certain Christian communities who want to put a box around specific forms of culture and label them "safe" or "unsafe," Dr. Scharen argues for God's ability to speak to us through a variety of media -- the challenge is discernment.

Here's an excerpt:

"Sin understood as acting badly and grace as the power

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Listening for God in Popular Culture

Dr. Christian Scharen reflects upon the need for deep attention to culture as a way of discerning the big questions people are really asking:

 

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M is for missional church

M

From Craig Van Gelder's book The Ministry of the Missional Church: A Community Led by the Spirit:

The church is.
The church does what it is.
The church organizes what it does.

The interrelationship of all three aspects is important to understand. The church is. The church's nature provides the framework and foundation for understanding the essential character of the church. The church does what it is. The nature of the church establishes the foundation for understanding the purpose of the church

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M is for missio dei

By Mary Sue Dreier

Sail

Missio Dei (Latin for "mission of God") has become one of the catchphrases of the missional church conversation. The phrase itself has a story to tell which illustrates the insights, importance, and implications it has for our future as a church in mission.

Missio Dei was coined to express the essence of the conversation when Christian churches from around the world gathered in 1952 in post-World War II Germany (Willingen) for an international council on mission. The twentieth

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