A Universal Gospel

“The church’s call to be universal touches the very issues that seem to perplex the church today: the impact of liberation theology, the urgent challenge of global justice and peace, debates over pluralism in dogma and praxis, dialogue with Judaism and non-Christian religions, church government, the emergence of new forms of ministry, the role of women.  Having to struggle with such issues is a necessary consequence of belief in a universal gospel.  For by definition that gospel cannot be bottled up in one culture, one social class, or one power group.  The Bible itself would raise these issues even if contemporary Christian life did not.  The pages of the Scriptures–both Old and New Testaments–are filled with the struggles of God’s people to be faithful to his covenant, to bring justice and salvation to the poor and defenseless, to reach beyond the boundaries of Judea and Samaria, to find identity as God’s people in new times and new places.  The mission question is intrinsic to the Bible.” – Senior and Stuhlmueller, The Biblical Foundations for Mission (1983:2)

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