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Circles, Triangles, and Squaresa look at postmodernism and The Church : 

Circles, Triangles, and Squaresa look at postmodernism and The Church Remember our 2 overall study goals: 1) To understand our place within a developed history 2) To develop a personalized evangelism strategy Now we will begin thinking of ways to adapt methods without changing the message as we “become all things...” This lesson touches on apologetics & some evangelism needs of Postmodernists

Slide 2: 

What They Want Our Challenge to Overcome 1. Spirituality (relativistic view of “God”)‏ 2. Community (fear of organized religion)‏ 3. Story/Narrative (all stories seem legitimate)‏ 4. Experience (experience must be understood)‏ 5. Holism (presenting the serious side of sin)‏ 6. Particularity (the relevance of an ancient faith)‏ 7. Irony (can lead to relativism)‏ 8. Wider Rationality (our fear of intuition & emotion)‏ Expectations and Challenges (Van Gelder, 2002 Missiology)‏

Our Challenges in Delivery : 

Our Challenges in Delivery First Things First... Postmoderns will not respond to lecturing 1) Keep things “conversational” 2) Admit and deal with doubts early on 3) Be “transparently credible” 4) Help the other overcome being/feeling alienated 5) Develop an understanding of “secular” people 6) Have strong and guiding core convictions Learn how to: Value conversations, not just conversions Listen to their story, share your own and God's Prayerfully expect and prepare for a conversion Pursue the Great Commission (training/equipping)‏ (Hunter, 1992)‏ (McLaren, 2002)‏

Being “Authentic” and “Believable” : 

Being “Authentic” and “Believable” Faith must be rational Truly owning (i.e., “living”) Christianity Realize reason has limits (1 Cor 1:18-2:5)‏ You must really “know” what you know Then “show” that to others by authentic living A Helpful Analogy: Reason = knowing about someone Faith = committing to that person *would you make a commitment to someone without first having a foundation of knowledge? (Van Gelder, 2002 Missiology)‏ (Cox, MMin621 Lectures)‏

Being “Authentic” and “Believable” : 

Being “Authentic” and “Believable” The difference b/t “bad” and “good” faith Bad Faith is based solely on unquestioned authority, pressure/coercion, psychological needs for belonging, self-interest & base motives, arrogant, unteachable, dishonest, apathetic, and retreats under pressure Good Faith is humble, teachable, inquisitive, grateful, honest, communal, active, tough, and relational One attracts, the other repels... (McLaren, 1999)‏

Discussion : 

Discussion Personal Evangelism takes authenticity & believability We have demonstrated that postmoderns want to be treated personally – not as a statistical group To this end, we must each be prepared to reach out personally – which means building relationships What are ways we can strike up open-ended friendships with students so they can experience the faith that authentically and believably guides us?

Slide 7: 

Where can Christians look for advice? “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1-2)‏ “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:” (1 Peter 2:21)‏ Our Great Example

What Is Jesus' Basic Message? : 

What Is Jesus' Basic Message? You were made in God's Image Created for a righteous family relationship His image is stamped deep within ourselves Creativity Free-Moral Agency Personality Intelligence Relationships (inclination towards sociability)‏ Morality The Bad News Is... Sin has distorted His image in us We abuse His image to our own destruction The REALLY Good News is Reconciliation! (Cox, MMin621 Lectures)‏

Is The Christian Message Valid? : 

Is The Christian Message Valid? Apologetics is two-fold Prayerfully living out the Christian faith Seeking after God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit Trusting His providence and role in conversion Revealing God to Mankind There are physical proofs (Psalm 19)‏ There are spiritual proofs (Acts 1:3)‏ There are historical proofs (Acts and our existence)‏ There is the person of Jesus 1 – intellectually honest 2 – scandalously inclusive 3 – relationally electric 4 – graciously demanding 5 – powerfully noncoercive (Cox on “McLaren”, MMin621 Lectures)‏

What About Their Objections? : 

What About Their Objections? Postmoderns enjoy confrontation 1 – expect confrontation on various issues like “suffering”, “Christianity is unscientific”, “belief is a crutch”, “Christianity is a sexist religion”, historic corruption & oppression, doctrinal difficulties, etc... 2 – prepare by having a ready answer for why you believe (2 Tim 2:15)‏ 3 – be ready to admit that you don't have an answer, but that you will study about it 4 – have someone(s) to bounce ideas off of

Assignment : 

Assignment Jesus says, Every last particle of power and authority has been given to me. Now that you know that: As you are going in the world, doing your daily things, seek first the Kingdom of God by making disciples for me, baptizing them by the authority of the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and be sure to teach them to make my life and teaching their example and guide. You will never be alone, I am with you until the end of time. Amen.

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