Wednesday, March 12, 2008

WEC Conference

Yesterday I attended a seminar with Dan Branda with Association of Baptists for World Evangelization (ABWE) entitled One Punk Under God: A Discussion of Contextualization. The main thrust of the seminar focused on a Sundance Film, One Punk Under God, featuring Jay Bakker (son of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker). Jay has a church called "Revolution Church" that meets in a bar and ministers to the punk scene in Boston.

One interesting quote from the video was "For some groups we're too Christian. For others we're not Christian enough."

Some of the questions raised were:

  • Is it a problem that they meet in a bar?
  • Is it a problem that the the bar is open while they're meeting? (In one scene Jay reminds those in attendance to tip their waitresses.)
  • Is there a line to be drawn as far as contextualization to the culture is concerned?

The rest of the story, according to the film, is that Jay also happens to be a "gay-affirming pastor." The second portion of the seminar focused on Jay's struggle of whether or not he believes homosexuality is a sin. How far does contextualization go here?

Dan led the discussion well and it was a packed room! (I kept looking over my shoulder to make sure the fire marshall wasn't there because I'm pretty sure some codes were violated!) Some quotes from Dan:

"There is a healthy tension between theological truths and reaching the least of these."
"There is a real need to think through why we do what we do."

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