TC ERT Jul 2013 Vol 37 No 3


Now available
Paternoster Periodicals, c/- AlphaGraphics, 6 Angel Row, Nottingham NG1 6HL, UK

Theme: Divine Affectivity and Mission


  • Editorial: Divine Affectivity and Mission
  • Divine Heartbeats and Human Echoes: A Theology of Affectivity and Implications for Mission by Karen L.H. Shaw
  • Contextualization, the Bible, and Games by Craig Ott
  • The Moral Authority of Scripture and the Hermeneutics of Love by Patrick Nullens
  • Working with the Poor as a Means for Demonstrating the Good News in a Middle East Context by Robert Hamd
  • Evangelicals and the Environment: Going Beyond Stewardship by Athena E. Gorospe
  • Theology of Persecution and Martyrdom: an example in globalizing theology by Christof Sauer
  • Review Article: The Early History of the Evangelical Alliance and its Advocacy of Religious Freedom by Thomas Schirrmacher
  • Book Review

Editorial: Divine Affectivity and Mission

We commence this issue with a fascinating article on how the affectivity of God impacts mission. As the author, Karen Shaw (Lebanon) says, 'Emotions matter because God's revelation comes with great emotion and is meant to elicit strong affective responses.' She adds, 'The affective is a vital aspect of human personality and culture, and a necessary agent in the experience of salvation and spiritual maturity.' Aspects covered in this detailed biblical study include revelation, theological anthropology, soteriology, and pneumatology, and it concludes with reflections on how an affective theology might work out in the practice of mission.

In an equally intriguing study, Craig Ott (USA) describes how the logic of games can be applied to the contextualization of scripture. Referring to the way aims and rules in a game do not change but strategies do depending on the way the game plays out, he shows how biblical passages refer to the objectives of God's mission and how there are flexible strategies for adapting the teaching and models of Scripture in a local context.

Moving on from here to the moral authority of Scripture, Patrick Nullens (Belgium) shows how love precedes true knowing and therefore finds the hermeneutics of love as the way to understanding the ethical imperatives of the Bible, especially in a covenantal context.

For one way in which this might work out, we turn again to the Levant and learn from Robert Hamd how, since the 19th century, Reformed missionaries focused on vigorous work among the poor, building schools and hospitals, as a part of their ultimate task, the proclamation of the Gospel. However, since those days, there has been a divide between these two aspects of mission. Hamd's report on a vital present day ministry documents a deliberate attempt to recover the earlier holistic approach.

For our next two articles we turn to the 'Consultation on Scripture: Its Authority, Meaning and Mission in the Asian Context', sponsored by the Asia Theological Association in June, 2012. Athena Gorospe (Philippines) presented a paper on 'Evangelicals and the Environment' in which she advocates the 'theology of life' as a more biblically satisfactory and contextually helpful approach than the commonly used theme of stewardship, which she argues is 'limited in its usefulness' and restricted in its appeal. Another paper at that conference was contributed by Christof Sauer (South Africa) in which he outlines the comprehensive biblical scope of a statement on persecution and martyrdom from an earlier conference as a welcome example of 'globalizing theology.'

We conclude with an article length review by our General Editor of a voluminous study of the early history of the Evangelical Alliance and especially its remarkable advocacy of religious freedom. Reference to this global body is a fitting conclusion to an issue with remarkable insights from around the world.

Thomas Schirrmacher, General Editor
David Parker, Executive Editor