Paternoster Periodicals, c/- 8-9 Vanguard Court, Preston Farm, Stockton-on-Tees TS18 3TR UK
- Incarnating the Gospel: Socio Political Activity in the Ministry of F.B. Meyer by Ian Randall
- Saved Through Childbearing: An African Feminist Interpretation and Theology by Emiola Nihinlola
- Can We Measure the Success and Effectiveness of Entrepreneurial Church Planting? by Samuel Lee
- The use of Sūra 3:64 in interfaith appeals: dialogue or daʿwa? by Gordon Nickel
- Three Horizons for Theology by Rolf Hille
- Book Reviews
- Annual Index
Editorial: Theme – Incarnating the Gospel
One of the most important parts of theological work is applying the teaching of Scripture to our contemporary context – in part an intellectual activity, understanding the thought patterns and cultural conditions of the day, and in part a practical matter – showing the grace of God in the day by day life of the community. However, these two are not always linked successfully. So our first article is a fine example of how one preacher who was well known for his spiritual teaching was just as forthright in his application of the gospel to his community and nation. We are thankful to the author, Ian Randall (UK) for permitting us to reproduce this section of his biography of F B Meyer which deals with his socio-political activity, providing as it does a first rate exposition of this important man’s ministry.
Next, a completely different environment with a paper from Emiola Nihinlola (Nigeria) who applies basic biblical principles to the situation of women in Africa where, as he points out, there is much exploitation, especially in their role as mothers. His focus is on the much neglected text, 1 Timothy 2:15. He discusses such key issues such as creation, alienation, redemption and consummation, concluding that ‘Christian women have a sacred and divine task … to give birth and rebirth to godly children who will establish the will of God in the hearts of men and prepare them to enter the Kingdom of God’
Samuel Lee (USA) takes our thoughts to the specific area of church planting and evangelism, describing how business enterprises can be used to build ‘spiritually and economically integrated communities of faith.’ Typically, this involves the idea of a ‘Third Space’ to bridge the gap between the church and others (the gospel and the world) by ‘implementing ventures of creative neutral spaces … that are more inviting to strangers than traditional ecclesiological models.’ Using a case study, he evaluates this form of mission, concluding that it has much potential providing that includes something more than an individual approach but one that inlcudes the community and society at large.
On a rather different note, we now open up the topic of inter-religious encounter with an examination of arguments involved in the Muslim document ‘A common word’. On detailed exegetical grounds, the author, Gordon Nickel (Canada/India) questions the claims of this document that love of God and neighbour is a ‘common essential.’ While seeking friendly relations, Nickel shows that fidelity to one’s own convictions and truth in discussion are essential.
So finally we turn to a ‘classic’ article from an earlier issue of our journal by Klaus Bockmuehl (Germany) which provides us with a simple but compelling intellectual basis for all of our theological work, encompassing the three horizons of theology – church, humanity and God.
Thomas Schirrmacher, General Editor
David Parker, Executive Editor