so: future church?

October 6, 2008

I was doing coffee with Nelus Niemandt, lecturer in the department of Missiology at the University of Pretoria, and author of Nuwe Drome vir Nuwe Werklikhede today. We had a real good chat, I differed with him regarding some of his articles, but got real respect when I saw that this guy is actually OK with it if you differ from him! And in the end found that we might understand each other better than I thought…

Anyhow, he asked me what I think is going to be the important things for the church of the future, and after thinking hard I answered with this:

  • Community. The church of the future will in radical ways discover what community mean. How to care for each other (not how pastors are supposed to care for there flock).
  • Theology. The church of the future will have a robust theology. This has nothing to do with the conclusions this theology find. But it will be a well thought-out theology. But more than this, it would be a theology that was found in community, that was tested in community, and found to have meaning for life, especially for life in times of crisis.
  • Relationships rather than training. People will open themselves up to influences because of the relation they have with the other, not because of the denomination the other come from.

So, this was what I could think of on my feet. What would you add or change?

7 Responses to “so: future church?”

  1. Roger Saner Says:

    I’d add in missional ecclesiology…fluid church structures…while still rooted in historical Christianity.

  2. cobus Says:

    The conversation centred around a discussion of missional/emerging/David Bosch… I think within the context of that we kind of assumed the missional part:-)

  3. Reggie Says:

    Roger what do you mean with ‘missional ecclesiology’ ? i

  4. Roger Saner Says:

    Reggie: that’s when mission is the organising principle of the church; putting “getting involved in the mission of God” before “how do we do church?” Another way of saying it is first *be* the people of God *for* the world…*then* sort out the internal admin problems.

    “ecclesiology” is the study of the church. Alan Hirsch’s “The Forgotten Ways” is, for me, the definitive work on this.

  5. Thomas Says:

    Community is a by-product of faith. Someone said something to this effect: love as the goal breeds hatred.

  6. Cori Says:

    I really like this list. I appreciate ‘robust theology’ being on it as some assume (for some reason) that the emerging movement is encouraging a lax theology or a total indifference to what we believe or what the Bible says…

    The whole community/relationship thing is going to take a lot more time and effort to work out. What does this look like, how will it work itself out? On the one hand it seems so natural, on the other hand takes a lot of effort when that community is a very diverse crowd with very differing needs and expectations.

    Thanks for these thoughts, Cobus.


  7. […] probeer deesdae sê hoe die kerk van die toekoms gaan moet lyk. Ek het self ook al probeer. En ek sal waarskynlik nog ‘n paar keer probeer in die maande wat kom. Kom ek voeg net een […]


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