Pastor Paul Bruns says, “I titled my memoir How Gracious of God! because I was the most surprised person in the world at what God’s grace did through me and my family for 32 years in Nigeria, West Africa. It was he who sent us, equipped us and enabled us to serve him. Therefore, my prayer is [...]
Check out the latest issue of Missio Apostolica! See the new cover and the new subtitle “Lutheran Mission Matters.” This issue includes articles on mission in the 21st century, nihilism, Bithynia, contextualization, missional communities, and more. Missio Apostolica – May 2014 (PDF) If you would like to order a print copy of this issue, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
In this article, Newton reviews “A Theological Statement for Mission in the 21st Century,” written by President Matthew Harrison at the request of the LCMS at its 2013 Synodical Convention. Newton affirms the Christ-centered foundation laid down by the “Statement” noting the solid Biblical and Confessional theology upon which sound Lutheran missiology must build. He [...]
This article considers how Christians should understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ and its proclamation where “nihilism” is the normal condition. “Nihilism” means, as Nietzsche put it, that “the highest values devalue themselves; the aim is lacking; ‘why?’ has no answer.” Nihilism is a normal condition for many in North America (and elsewhere), and its [...]
In thinking about how mission has changed since I served with the Board for Mission Services, it would be easy to say that the mission has not changed but the methods have. Some today are not sure. The “mission,” when I was privileged to serve, was to bring the gospel into the entire world. Today [...]
Barriers to the Gospel: Approaching Contextualization from a Confessional Lutheran Perspective by Mike Rodewald
The term contextualization has undergone a series of definitions based upon differing theological understandings of the Gospel in mission. This article explores a confessional Lutheran understanding of the Gospel message in Gospel proclamation and what this means for defining contextualization from a confessional Lutheran Christian perspective.
Properly Dividing: Distinguishing the Variables of Culture from the Constants of Theology or It’s Not How You Look, It’s How You Think You Look by Jack M. Schultz
This article is an anthropological investigation of cultural forces at play within our Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod and their impact on our institution. It is an examination of the complex entanglement between a theological understanding and a cultural context. The article includes observations about our current demographic profile, our stated ideas about ourselves and what we’d [...]
Even though he was only the pastor of a small insignificant church in Germany, Wilhelm Loehe was an innovator in missions. This article will briefly examine Loehe’s background in order to identify some of the influences that helped develop his unusual missionary motivation and that led to the founding of the Frankenmuth mission settlement as [...]
“A Bishop’s House Church–Luther’s Thoughts” Some Mission Truths Regarding Missional Communities by James D. Buckman
The Church in the first three centuries was a House Church community. A living example is the basilica of Santa Pudenziana—the oldest church in Rome. This basilica is literally an expansion of the home owned by a Christian family who lived when Constantine made our faith the religion of his empire. This House Church was [...]
Why Jesus Is Not an Avatar: A Critique of the Indian Hindu and Christian Incarnation Idea of Jesus as ‘Avatar’ on the Basis of Nicene Affirmation for Future Missions by Subin Raj
Christians believe and confess that God in His chosen time sent His son incarnated in human flesh for the salvation of humans and all creation. This ‘incarnation’ idea has been equated with the Indian Hindu religious idea of ‘Avatar’ by Indian Christians to inculturate the Gospel message in Indian terms. The Hindus, on the other [...]