Are You Ready to Become an Empowered Missional-Ecumenist?

John ArmstrongACT 3, Missional-Ecumenism, Personal, Theology, Unity of the Church13 Comments

Since 2013, I have trained almost fifty people in how to become bold risk-takers for unity in Christ’s mission. In addition, I have taught about 10-15 graduate students. The number is not large but the impact can be immense if the Holy Spirit uses this experience to ignite a fire in his people. I am persuaded that great things do … Read More

Steve Bevans: A Missional-Ecumenist Catholic Theologian

John ArmstrongACT 3, Missional-Ecumenism, My Christian Unity Story, Personal, Roman Catholicism, The Church, Theology, Unity of the Church4 Comments

Stephen Bevans is Louis J. Luzbetak, S.V.D., Professor of Mission and Culture. He is a Roman Catholic priest in the Society of the Divine Word, an international missionary congregation, and served for nine years (1972-1981) as a missionary in the Philippines. He has been on the Catholic Theological Union faculty for 26 years. He is also a very dear friend to me and … Read More

Salvation and the Christian Life – Doing Theology in the Era of Global Ecumenism, Part 5

John ArmstrongBiblical Theology, Faith, Missional-Ecumenism, Protestantism, Reformed Christianity, Roman Catholicism, The Church, Theology9 Comments

What I have written in my previous four posts on salvation and the Christian life can be stated very precisely in the following way – we are saved by grace alone, but we are saved for works and through works in the sense that such works are evangelical and always proceed from faith and serve the advancement of our real sanctification. Our … Read More

Salvation and the Christian Life – Doing Theology in the Era of Global Ecumenism, Part 4

John ArmstrongBiblical Theology, Faith, Missional-Ecumenism, Protestantism, Roman Catholicism, The Church, Theology9 Comments

Sixteenth-century Protestant Reformers stressed that we are justified while still in our sins. I believe they were right. We are, as they put it, simultaneously justified and still sinful. The Reformers, including the Augustinian Martin Luther, were zealous for the sovereignty of God. Many of their modern heirs remain zealous for this great truth. I see this zeal as inherently good. … Read More

Salvation and the Christian Life – Doing Theology in the Era of Global Ecumenism, Part 3

John ArmstrongDiscipleship, Faith, Gospel/Good News, Lordship of Christ, Reformed Christianity, Roman Catholicism, The Church, Theology9 Comments

When Catholics and Protestants engage in the polemics of theological polarities they quite often misrepresent one another. In the process they miss the deeper fruit of real ecumenism in doing confessing Christian theology. Non-theologians often do this more poorly because they adopt the views they have been taught by their favorite teachers and then treat them as the gold standard. … Read More

Salvation and the Christian Life – Doing Theology in the Era of Global Ecumenism, Part 2

John ArmstrongBiblical Theology, Discipleship, Faith, Missional-Ecumenism, Protestantism, Roman Catholicism, The Church, The Future, Theology7 Comments

When the Holy Spirit revealed to me the truth of John 17:21 I felt I had no choice but to commit the rest of my days to humbly learning from other Christian traditions and teachers. Both my theology and practice necessitated a more humble epistemology and a deeper personal tone anchored in love. I did not jettison what I believed. … Read More

Salvation and the Christian Life – Doing Theology in the Era of Global Ecumenism, Part 1

John ArmstrongACT 3, Discipleship, Missional-Ecumenism, The Church, The Future, Theology7 Comments

We live in the era of global ecumenism. The word ecumenism is actually derived from the Greek oikoumene, which literally means “the whole inhabited world.” It was originally used with reference to the whole of the Roman Empire. In the ancient Christian Church the word was first used in contexts such as an “Ecumenical council” or the “Ecumenical patriarch.” Here … Read More

The Mercersburg Movement: How Reformed Theology Helped Me Become a Missional-Ecumenist

John ArmstrongACT 3, American Evangelicalism, Church History, History, Missional-Ecumenism, Reformed Christianity, Roman Catholicism, The Church, Theology8 Comments

Yesterday. I quoted nineteenth century theologian-historian Philip Schaff (1819–1893), a Swiss-born, German-educated Reformed Protestant minister who became a widely regarded church historian at the end of his life. Schaff spent most of his adult life living and teaching in the United States. His works are still read though his history is now dated by the simple fact that he died … Read More

Glorifying God in Our Cultural Pursuits

John ArmstrongAmerican Evangelicalism, Biblical Theology, Culture, Film, Kingdom of God, Television, Theology6 Comments

Last week I asked a much-debated question raised by the patristic theologian Tertullian: “What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?” I observed that Tertullian was primarily concerned about what role philosophy had in dealing with the Christian faith. The same question, as I showed previously, can be applied to popular culture. What place does Hollywood, Silicon Valley and Madison Avenue … Read More