How do we become the Research and Development department of the Kingdom of God?
One answer is to train up theologians who can think outside the box. But what does this mean? Sitting here on the tail end of a Master of Divinity, preparing for a Master of Theology in Spring '06 (in other words, as one in training), here are a few ideas:
- Train to search the scriptures before searching philosophy and theology, but search those too.
- Be willing to hold every practice and every belief under the scrutiny of Scripture, not vice versa. Scripture is the trump card.
- Put theologians together with practitioners—especially church planting missiologists. In fact, put them in local congregations (AKA R&D labs).
- Learn to ask “what if” questions AND make church a safe place to risk answering those questions.
- Make space for and insist upon crosspollination—get academicians into the local church and get practitioners into the academy.
- Listen to those outside the church—they speak truths about us that we rarely hear. But do scrutinize everything by Scripture—it alone is the Word of our Master (and, yes, I am showing my cards).
- Be intentional. Research and Development does not happen by accident—at least not usually.
I’m sure there is more…
CHURCH OR KINGDOM?