EFCA Theology Conference 2014: “Christian Faithfulness in a Changing Culture”

Greg Strand – February 14, 2013 6 Comments

Our next year’s EFCA Theology Conference, January 22-24, 2014, will address the theme “Christian Faithfulness in a Changing Culture”. It will be hosted by Christ Community Church in Leawood, KS.

We live in a postmodern, post-Christian day, which we have known for some time. For most this statement has been made intellectually. With the moral and cultural sea-changes, and the speed with which they are happening, parallel with a moral tsunami, many are for the first time beginning to feel and experience palpably some of the implications of what we have for many years only known abstractly or experienced vicariously.

These shifts require a different way of thinking, engaging, and speaking, without compromising the Word of God or Christian faithfulness.

We hope to include various topics addressed from a biblical, theological, historical and pastoral perspective:

  • Church History: we are today more like the early church than we have been since the days Constantine made Christianity legal in 313.
  • Church: what it means for the church to be missional, in the sense that its primary nature is missional, by virtue of its very being (1 Pet. 2:9-10).
  • Bible: there are significant questions pertaining to the inerrancy of the Bible, and to hermeneutics, both critical issues for us who affirm the ultimate authority of the Word of God.
  • Kingdom: this is a significant debate with numerous questions about what the kingdom means and how it is ushered in and its relation to the church, and how Christians ought to engage in culture and what Christians can expect of culture, among many other related matters.
  • Culture: though Christian fumes remain, and though we were never a Christian nation, we were a nation that was strongly influenced by Christian principles, but that has and continues to change drastically and rapidly, and the “intolerance of tolerance” is one of the key marks of this culture. During these changes, the twin temptations are to move in an accommodationist (liberal) or a separatist direction.
  • Contextual Theology: this is driving a lot of theologizing that is being done today, which often results in the culture being the lens through which the biblical text is interpreted rather than the other way around, which leads to biblical revisionism and liberal theology.
  • Religious Freedom:  this is narrowing more and more, and the focus is on freedom of worship and freedom from religion, not freedom of religion, and this has profound implications on Christians living in the world but not being of the world.
  • Persecution: Christianity is the most persecuted religion in the world, and though it includes death in some Islamic countries, it also refers to other kinds and forms of persecution. But rather than engage in a victim mentality, which Evangelicals are prone to do, we must know that this is the precise manner and context in which the gospel transforms, seasons with salt, illumines with light, etc.

In sum, we need to figure out how to live the Christian life with faithfulness in a post-Christian day.

I have considered doing a pre-conference on Trinitarian Theology. This is an important issue for Evangelicals to know and understand, as there are many changes taking place in Trinitarian theology, and not all are good!

Greg Strand

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Affectionately called “Walking Bible” by his youngest daughter, Greg Strand has a ministry history that goes back to 1982. Since that time, he has served in local church ministry in a variety of ministry capacities: youth pastor, associate pastor of adult ministries and senior pastor. He is currently the EFCA’s Executive Director of Theology and Credentialing. Greg reads voraciously and never stops learning — a passion reflected in the overflowing bookshelves that spill from his library to multiple offices. And he could tell you about each of those books! His hunger for learning pales in contrast to his great love for God and for teaching the Word of God.

6 responses to EFCA Theology Conference 2014: “Christian Faithfulness in a Changing Culture”

  1. Respected Sir/Madam
    I am from Pakistan.I wanna join this conference.Please tell me about the prospectus.God bless you.

  2. Thomas Varghese August 8, 2013 at 9:38 am

    Respected Sir,

    Happy to read about EFCA Theological Conference in 2014. I would like to know the details of the conference. God willing would like to take part in that conference in 2014. Wait for your reply

  3. Let Thy will be done

  4. Anyone who knows the bible well knows that Tim Tebow is not a Christian. Jesus said in LK. 16;15, “What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.’ The things that are highly valued among men are; sports, money, status, good looks, scholarship, sexual immorality and popularity. But Jesus tells us to deny ourselves daily, pick up our cross and follow him. He also tells us in LK. 14:33 that we must give up everything we have or we cannot be his disciple. That’s because God’s ways are the opposite of man’s ways. Yet Tebow’s number one interest is his football career, especially being a quarterback since he has turned down other offers for different positions. So it’s no surprise that he all but said that his professional career was more important than standing up for the gospel. Scripture also tells us to come out and be separate from unbelievers (2 Co 6:14-17) But the professing church has been mingling with the secular world for SO long, that they are adopting its customs and can no longer distinguish wolves from sheep. Jesus tells us that we will recognize false Christians by their fruit. Anyone can preach, particularly thank God when the desires of their flesh are satisfied. But it’s their lifestyle, interests and priorities that show whether they belong to the world or belong to God. Tim Tebow is worldly, not spiritual. 1 Jn 2:6, “Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.” Jesus was poor, unattractive, unscholarly, non-athletic and a non-conformist. So anyone who wants to walk as he did will have to give up worldly things because whatever is keeping anyone from walking as Jesus did is an idol. That’s why Jesus said that only FEW will find the narrow road to life. We need to learn to spot wolves from sheep All we have to do is love God enough to read, believe and obey his words.

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