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Category Archives: Doing Theology

God’s Fiction: A Sermon of Vulnerability (Luke 18:1-6)

Preached at Church of the Servant King, Portland (10/20/13) “Then Jesus told them a parable to show them they should always pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1).   Losing heart is shockingly easy. We are endlessly vulnerable in this world. We are made vulnerable by powers that rule over us, we are made vulnerable […]

From text to Word

So much depends, I believe, on the current theological milieu (or the little corner of it in which I tend to find myself) coming to see Scripture once again not merely as “text” or “script” but as Word, that is as the living and active witness to the one Word of God, Jesus Christ. This […]

Resentment and theology

Resentment is a pattern of desire such that someone is much more occupied with the obstacle to their project than with the project itself. The sign of grace is when someone finds that their desire has been reformed, so that what had seemed like an obstacle becomes relatively indifferent, and they are ever freer to […]

Blogging as theological discourse

Ok, I’m back. After a week in Chicago for EP and then another week vacationing in California with the always-dangerous Andrew Kooy, I am back. Stay tuned to the Valdenkor blog for some forthcoming recountings of the culinary chronicles of Andrew and myself from the past week. In the meantime, here is a segment from […]

Kingdom-World-Church: Some Provisional Theses

by Nathan R. Kerr, Ry O. Siggelkow, and Halden Doerge In a recent conversation on this blog regarding an important review, by Ry Siggelkow, I (Nate Kerr) suggested in the comments that to think rightly what it means to say that “mission makes the church,” that mission as lived proclamation of and witness to Christ’s […]

The hard labor of theology

The more I read James Alison the more he continues to be rather shockingly profound, perhaps most clearly in the humility and simplicity of his work — which also always seems to embolden and enliven it. Here he is on the nature of doing theology: Theology is perhaps for those of us who can’t find […]

Donald Miller, Theology, and Relationship

Derrick, recently returned in a sustained manner to the blogosphere, has stirred up the waters with a post (rightly) critiquing Christian hipster and coffeehouse favorite author, Donald Miller on the issue of theology, relationship, and the knowledge of God. Miller, for his part seems to have responded, both via blog and tweet. Derrick, of course, […]

An apocalyptic “style”

David Toole has some comments about what that notion means: An apocalyptic style is a way of acknowledging the strangeness of this biblical world and, by extension, the world generally . . . [apocalyptic style] founds itself not upon the identity of the same but upon the otherness of a world that never ceases to be strange. In […]

In defense of ass-kicking

In recent discussion about some comments by Gene McCarraher in the in-progress TOJ interview, some interesting stuff came about the relative merits of kicking ass, argumentatively speaking. The passage that occasioned this discussion in the interview is as follows: I was giving a talk in Chicago a few months after the invasion, and a student […]

Powers and Practices §1: Chris Huebner

One of my new aims this year is to blog more consistently about what I’m reading. One way I’m going to do that is by doing more chapter by chapter reviews/notes on books. I’m hoping to do one of these most weekdays. To kick it off, I’m starting with Powers and Practices: Engaging the Work […]

The Meaning of Natural Theology: Open Thread

I imagine that natural theology is near the top of the list of theological issues that are most fervently argued about and simultaneously most misunderstood. At least since Barth and Brunner’s head-on collision over the matter it has been the subject of voracious conflict with both sides claiming that the other doesn’t really understand the […]

Doing Theology Against Ourselves

In relation to the last post, lets probe a bit further. Assuming — as seems eminently reasonable — that most theologians’ actual shape of living tends to depart sharply from the theological projects they promote, how shall we evaluate this? One’s immediate reaction is usually one of indignation: “How could so and so write all […]

Doing Theology with/as Caiaphas

Its hard to find a more scandalizing bunch of people than theologians, and not in the good way. One would think that among a guild of professionals dedicated to getting to know God as well as possible you’d see less infidelity, churlishness, affluence, and apathy towards injustice than in other professions. However this hardly seems […]

The Temptations and Ethics of Blogging

Ben has recently done us all a service in his superb work on the nature of blogging as theological discourse. Without a doubt blogging is changing the nature of theological writing, both for good and for ill in many respects. In thinking on this for the last week or so, I’ve come to see that […]

Proclamation and Theology

Again from Barth: Like the subject-matter of Christianity, Church proclamation must also remain free in the last resort, free to receive the command which it must always receive afresh from the free life of the subject matter of Christianity. Church proclamation and not dogmatics is immediate to God in the Church. Proclamation is essential, dogmatics […]

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