Presentation on theme: "Restoration, Antithesis, and Education"— Presentation transcript:
1 Restoration, Antithesis, and Education Michael GoheenTrinity Western University
2 God’s Response While justly angry God did not turn his back on a world bent on destruction;he turned his face to it in love.With patience and tender care he set outon the long road of redemptionto reclaim the lost as his peopleand the world as his kingdom (CT, 19).
3 Genesis 3:15: Mother Promise Although Adam and Eve were expelled from the garden and their work was burdened by sin’s effects, God held on to them in love. He promised to crush the evil forces they unleashed. (CT, par. 20)
4 Genesis 3.15 Promise of battle Promise of a Champion Promise of victory
5 Observations on redemption Redemption is progressive in its outworkingRedemption is restorative in its natureRedemption is comprehensive in scope
6 Progressive in Outworking Act One: God Establishes His Kingdom: CreationAct Two: Rebellion in the Kingdom: FallAct Three: The King Chooses Israel: Redemption InitiatedScene One: A People for the KingScene Two: A Land for the PeopleInterlude: A Kingdom Story Waiting for an Ending: The Intertestamental PeriodAct Four: The Coming of the King: Redemption AccomplishedAct Five: Spreading the News of the King: The Church’s MissionScene One: From Jerusalem to RomeScene Two: To the Ends of the EarthAct Six: The Return of the King: Redemption Completed
7 Story of God’s Mission“The Bible renders to us the story of God’s mission through God’s people in their engagement with God’s world for the sake of the whole of God’s creation.” (Chris Wright)
8 Story of missionGod’s mission: Long term purpose to restore the whole creation and all of human lifeIsrael’s mission: Embody God’s original creational purposes for the sake of the worldJesus mission: Reveal and accomplish God’s final redemptive purpose for the creationChurch’s mission: Continue Jesus’ mission to make known the kingdom of God to the ends of the earth in life, word and deed
9 Mistaken NotionVery often people have come to the New Testament with the presumption that ‘going to heaven when you die’ is the implicit point of it all They acquire that viewpoint from somewhere, but not from the New Testament. (N. T. Wright)
10 Restoration of this life . . . it is precisely ordinary earthly existence that is redeemed (G.C. Berkouwer).
11 Redemption is restorative The creation is very good, the way God intended itHuman beings are created to live a bodily life in the context of creation.Sin is the problem not materiality.Old Testament views future kingdom as restored life on new creation.Jesus proclaims the gospel of the kingdom.Jesus’ resurrection is a preview.The biblical language of redemption, restoration, renewal all point to the return of the good creation to what it was meant to be.Destruction of the creation would mean a Satanic victory.
12 Restoration is comprehensive And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfilment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ (Ephesians 1:9-10).
13 As Far as the Curse is Found For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (Colossians 1:19-20)
14 Mission of Israel: Embody a Comprehensive Restoration Israel called to embody a comprehensive salvation for the sake of the nationsOT Story: Formation of people and placed on land to be light to nationsLaw: Orders whole life of IsraelWisdom: Orders whole life of IsraelProphets confront Israel for not embodying God’s salvation in whole of their lives
15 Comprehensive restoration made known in Jesus Everything he said and did was directly related to the coming of the kingdom. He reversed all the consequences of evil in the world: disease, possession by inhuman spirits, guilt, ritualistic and empty religion, a caste system of purity and impurity, scarcity of food, a hostile nature, commercial exploitation and death (Andrew Kirk).
16 Comprehensive restoration accomplished in crucifixion Gustav Aulén: “The work of Christ is first and foremost a victory over the powers which hold mankind in bondage: sin, death, and the devil.”John ; Col. 2.15; RevPublic battle and victory for the whole creationLesslie Newbigin: We “privatize this mighty work of grace and talk as if the whole cosmic drama of salvation culminates in the words ‘For me; for me.’”
17 Comprehensive restoration inaugurated in the resurrection Resurrection in Jewish thought: Arrival of life of new creationJesus: Dawning of new creationFirstborn from the dead (Rev.1:5)Firstfruits (I Cor. 15:20)
18 Prophetic Expectation Spirit MessiahSinDeathEvilSatanKnowledgeof GodLoveJoyJusticeOLD AGEAGE TO COME
19 New Testament Fulfillment Powers ofsindeathevilSatanPower ofSpirit’srenewingworkOLD AGEAGE TO COME
20 Mission as meaning of overlap The meaning of this ‘overlap of the ages’ in which we live, the time between the coming of Christ and His coming again, is that it is the time given for the witness of the apostolic Church to the ends of the earth. The end of all things, which has been revealed in Christ, is—so to say—held back until the witness has been borne to the whole world concerning the judgment and salvation revealed in Christ. The implication of a true eschatological perspective will be missionary obedience, and the eschatology which does not issue in such obedience is a false eschatology
21 Comprehensive salvation given by Spirit Spirit is deposit of kingdomReal money nowPromise of more in the futureSpirit is firstfruits of kingdomFirst part of crop nowPoints to the rest of the harvest in future
22 Foretaste and Preview We have a foretaste of the Kingdom Actual taste nowComplete meal in futureWe are previews of the KingdomActual footage of movie/kingdomDesigned to interest viewer in future movie/kingdom so they will want to participate
23 Church’s mission to make known a comprehensive restoration The Spirit thrusts God’s people into worldwide mission.He impels young and old, men and women,to go next door and far awayinto science and art, media and marketplacewith the good news of God’s graceFollowing the apostles, the church is sent—sent with the gospel of the kingdom . . .In a world estranged from God,where millions face confusing choices,this mission is central to our being . . .The rule of Jesus Christ covers the whole world.To follow this Lord is to serve him everywhere,without fitting in, as light in the darkness, as salt in a spoiling world.
24 Acts 1.1-8 Acts 1.6: Question about the kingdom Receive Spirit (firstfruits, deposit)‘You will be my witnesses.’
26 Antithetical encounter Israel’s battle with idolatryChurch takes up Israel’s mission (Ex ; cf. 1 Pet )Very different situation:Part of another culture based on different faith commitments
27 Dilemma of the Believing Community Part of western cultureCreational mandate: responsible for cultural developmentChrist’s redemption is comprehensiveWhole of western culture distorted by sinful idolatryIncompatibility between Scriptural and western story
28 In the world but not of it Jesus’ Prayer for His DisciplesI have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world.- John 17:14-18
29 I didn’t realize until I took INT, and now this course how much I try to make Western culture and the Biblical worldview fit together. I realize more and more that they are actually opposite and against each other. Yet I must live in this culture because I am a part of it. Many times I struggle with how to do it.- Redeemer Student
30 Conflict Between Stories Dominant story in culture seeks to become exclusive story (e.g. European vs. Native)Minority communitiesFaithfulness and conflictORAccommodation and peaceYes Biblical story is translatable
31 Purity of Heart is to Will One Thing: Christ or Idols No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and mammon.- Jesus, in Matthew 6:24
33 Unbearable Tension Christians are: Members of western community Shaped by cultural storyMembers of covenant communityShaped by Biblical story
34 Do western Christians feel this unbearable tension? “Why did I not hear about modernity and its affect on me before? I really never knew how much modernity shapes my life until I came to Redeemer. It was always called ‘worldly’ but I never knew what that meant. Modernity affects all of my life and I wish I had known.”-Redeemer student
35 Tension Between Gospel and Culture The deeper the consciousness of the tension and the urge to take this yoke upon itself are felt, the healthier the Church is. The more oblivious of this tension the Church is, the more well established and at home in this world it feels, the more it is in deadly danger of being the salt that has lost its savour.- Hendrik Kraemer
36 Tension: Healthy in Early Church It is worthwhile to have a look at the struggle with adaptation by paying attention for a moment to the conflicts of Christians in their professions. The great question was, How far is a Christian allowed to enter into the professional jobs of those days with their mores and customs, without denying Christ and without becoming polluted by participation in idolatry?- Hendrik Kraemer
37 Suffering as normal badge of discipleship No human societies cohere except on the basis of some kind of common beliefs and customs. No society can permit these beliefs and practices to be threatened beyond a certain point without reacting in self-defense. The idea that we ought to be able to expect some kind of neutral secular political order, which presupposes no religious or ideological beliefs, and which holds the ring impartially for a plurality of religions to compete with one another, has no adequate foundation. The New Testament makes it plain that Christ's followers must expect suffering as the normal badge of their discipleship, and also as one of the characteristic forms of their witness (Lesslie Newbigin).
38 The Gospel speaks:Word of grace… culture is good creationWord of judgement… culture is idolatrously twisted and sinfully distortedTest everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil (I Thess. 5:21f).
39 Biblical Position: Affirmative/Antithetical Approach to Culture Gospel/YesAt homeGood creationMay not withdrawRejectGospel/NoAt oddsSinful distortionMay not accept status quo
40 Faithful Cultural Strategy Faithfulness and relevanceAvoids withdrawal, absorption, common groundAffirms both responsibility for cultural development and antithetical challenge to idolatrous developmentSubversion: Affirmation and rejection
41 What do we do with non- Christian education? What is creational insight/structure?How has that insight been twisted by idolatrous direction?
42 What do we do with this idolatrous institution called the ‘school’? Subversive fulfillment!Creational structureIdolatrous twisting and misdirection
43 Another Biblical Example: Household OIKOS: extended family in Roman empirestructured hierarchically and oppressivelyFundamental social building block of Roman empireUndifferentiated institution made up of marital, family, economic, political relationshipsOppressive and hierarchical distortion
44 Response of the early church Reject?Affirm?Subvert!
45 Subversive Fulfillment Discerned creational relationshipsSubverted relationships creating new institution recognizable as good news to culture
46 School?How can we participate in broader tradition of humanistic education, be at home, offer relevant witness (much creational good)Where has purpose, structure, curriculum, pedagogy, etc. been twisted by idolatry (rationalism, consumerism, etc)?
47 Aiming for Christian Education Alternative kind of education to public school systemRejects cultural idolatry that shapes these schoolsBased on distinctive and comprehensive philosophy of educationChristian approach transforms the whole enterprise: goals, curriculum, pedagogy, evaluation, structure, etc.
48 Settling for Christians Educating Christianity-enhanced public school educationAdds moral integrity, devotional piety, and biblical insight to select topicsMaintains status quo about education
49 Christian Perspective on Education Efforts at worldview and Christian educational philosophy sharpened vision for Christian educationLanguage of Christian perspective: Christ-centred curriculum, inner reformation of the sciences, biblical perspective on all areas of learning, or Christian world-and-life-viewKuyper’s vision of comprehensive scope of gospel challenges assumptions:Reality is segregated into two realms, sacred and secular, and gospel belongs only to the sacredGospel transforms only individuals but not societyEnlightenment notion that public life, including education is religiously neutral
50 Does Christian perspective transform school? Perception: Christian education will result from Christian perspectiveGap between rhetoric of Christian education and reality of Christian schoolsGap produces:Vague sense of taskFalse sense of securityConnection between perspective and implementation:Persuasive: BiblicalElusive: “As far as I can tell, Christian schools do not provide an alternative Christian education, if by that term we mean that our biblical perspective on life leads to a biblical model of education.”
51 Gap Challenge and Gap Problem Gap challenge: Rhetoric proclaims ideal toward which reality is moving--not there yet! (positive)Gap problem: Rhetoric and reality utterly inconsistent (negative)Majority problem in Christian education is gap problem"When confronted by all this evidence, my own allegiance to the ideal of Christian education sometimes wavers. The challenge of implementing a different, biblical model of schooling appears so far out of reach that I am tempted to think the whole idea might be wrong-headed. At times I wonder if there really is such a thing as a Christian model of education."
52 Educational Faithfulness Christian education: differenceChristian educating: enriching additionsThird way: educational faithfulnessDifference may be consequenceMore emphasis on common task with different faithQuestions:What does faithful education look like?What obstacles hinder us from implementing faithful education?What can we do to remove these obstacles?
53 Understanding the Reigning Educational Paradigm Need to understand reigning secular paradigm in educationTo enable Christian school to encounter this paradigm
54 Missionary Encounter in Education Normal position of Christian school in cultural context if it is faithfulClash of ultimate and comprehensive storiesSpiritual battleRequires Christian school community that believes gospel (true, story, comprehensive, power)Committed to living out of it and shaping whole life by itRequires a school that knows idolatrous story of cultureSchool that wrestles with dominant education paradigmEncounter takes place in all areas of educationEmbraces insights; rejects idolatry
55 Faithful Christian Education? Purpose of education: First battle?Then: What needs to be taught to equip children for that purpose? (Curriculum)Then: How can this be achieved? (Pedagogy, structures, evaluation)
56 Purpose: Why do we educate anyway? Traditional African education:Teach traditional life valuesGoal of integration into tribal communityMuslim education:Teach universal shariah lawGoal of integration in theocratic communityTeach certain things so that children will besocialized into a certain kind of community.Purpose governs educational activity.
57 Modernity and the Purpose of Education Pass on a unified body of universal scientific knowledgeEquip a world of rational citizensBuild a more rational world leading to freedom, justice, truth, and material prosperity
58 Postmodern Challenge to Modern Education If (in modernity) education was guided by the story of progress towards a better society by science and technology but we no longer believe that story...If (in modernity) education was to pass along a unified body of universal knowledge but we no longer believe that exists...Then what is the purpose of education?
59 Postmodernity and Purpose of Education Postman’s trinity: economic utility, consumerism, technologyVendor of useful information and marketable skillsEnables student to compete or survive in the jungle of the market
60 Biblical Story and Purpose of Education “Serviceable insight”Education for witnessEducation as witness
61 Questions: Curriculum What needs to be taught to equip students for witness?How does this differ from state requirements?Are there any specific omissions?How does modern and postmodern worldview affect curriculum?
62 What now?Size, complexity, and difficulty of task can lead to discouragementNeed to return to gospel for forgiveness and renewalNeed for ongoing study (individual, community)Continuing baby steps in joyAs individualsAs community