Why You Should Come to the Inaugural Missio Alliance National Gathering – Part 2
Today I want to give you a second reason on why you should come to the inaugural national gathering of the Missio Alliance. You can find my first reason here. My reasons are not in any particular order.
2. We need to re-imagine evangelicalism in North America in light of a faithful understanding of the narrative of Scripture and in a way that is genuine to our context (i.e. in the world, for the world, in the way of Christ).
A number of people are questioning the vitality of the evangelical church and her ability to connect meaningful with the our current generation and the next generation. Tony Jones recently wrote a blog post on Watch Evangelicals Lose Their Young. Rachel Held Evans talks about The Scandal of the Evangelical Heart, where she makes that case that some evangelicals theologians don’t pay enough attention to the heart.
Skye Jethani, who occupies numerous roles at Christianity Today, in his article at the Huffington Post asks Is This the End of ‘Evangelicalism’? Reflecting on Louie Giglio’s invite and withdrawal from praying at Obama’s inauguration, Skye makes the case that the evangelical brand, while it has a rich and historical significance, is significantly tainted, to the point that “has led many younger evangelicals to abandon the label altogether.” He states,
“There are a great many Christians who are looking for a new public identity — a new banner — that is distinct from the tainted brand of evangelicalism we’ve inherited from the religious right. We’re looking for one that retains the theological orthodoxy of Scripture as well as the historical commitment to the common good that earlier manifestations of evangelicalism affirmed. I suspect the leaders who rise up to carry that new banner will not only find many post-evangelical Christians rallying around them, but they may also discover the public square welcomes their presence.”
The theme for the inaugural national gathering for the Missio Alliance is The Future of the Gospel: Renewing Evangelical Imagination for Mission. We believe that the time is now to take Skye’s advice and engage in deep “self-reflection”. For “we not only need to consider how we contributed to this unfortunate outcome (a culturally contaminated brand) by our endless pursuit of relevancy, but also how we are going to change in the future.”
David Fitch, one of the plenary speakers at the Missio Alliance gathering, has already done some self-reflection and some deep theological work toward this end, in his aptly named book The End of Evangelicalism: Discerning a New Faithfulness For Mission.
Each of the plenary sessions will be speaking to this issue of renewing evangelical imagination for mission:
- The Gospel & the Church’s Mission Today – Scot McKnight and Don Coleman
- Being Human, Becoming Christian: An Embodied Reconciliation of Heaven and Earth – Cherith Fee-Nordling, Alan and Deb Hirsch and Tory Baucum
- Seeing the Bible as God’s Drama & Why The Future of Mission Depends on It – Howard-John Wesley and David Fitch
- The Interruptions of the Spirit and the Future of Mission – Jo Saxton and Amos Yong
- The What, Where, Why & When of the Kingdom – Dallas Willard and Bruxy Cavey
- Rhythm & Reign: Living as Church on the Margins of Culture & Foretaste of the Kingdom – Gary Nelson and Fred Harrell
The early bird deadline is January 31st. So take a moment and sign up now. Don’t miss what will likely be a historic gathering for evangelicals in our day. Below are the growing number of sponsors for this event.