Last year I worked on my philosophy of ministry (see the related posts below). This year at College Briefing one of the speakers (can't remember who) caused me to rethink one of my verbs. I had been using "expand the kingdom" but he or she pointed out that the Bible never uses such language in reference to our kingdom responsibilities. We are called to enter the kingdom and proclaim the kingdom. In response to this I began changing the verb to "embody".
Last week, I turned in a draft of a small portion of the first section of my thesis, applying my three-part theology of ministry [know the story-be the people-expand/embody the kingdom] to emerging ecclesiology [the fit was rather nice, btw]. Today, in speaking with the director of the Th.M. program, I have begun to swing the other way. He pointed out that to embody the kingdom is rather like being the people...it's a bit redundant. He also pointed out that a theological case could be made for our expanding the kingdom, as long as sovereignty-of-God-insuring caveats were put in place.
So, to use a term I learned a few days ago: I'm swithering.
Here's some bits on both:
"expand the kingdom"
- expanded vertically through sanctification
- expanded horizontally through proclamation (disciple-making, AKA evangelism)
"embody the kingdom"
- verbal proclamation
- behavioral proclamation
I'm really leaning toward "expand"
College Ministry Ponderings (oct '05)
Philosophy of Ministry, draft one (jun '05)
Theology of Ministry (feb '05)
Summing up a Year (jan '05)
Tag(s): theology ministry theology of ministry
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