Voices of the Global Church
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ…its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. 27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
I Corinthians 12:12, 25-27
One of the ways Asbury Seminary is cultivating a global community is by sharing stories from the Global Church. Listening and learning from each other’s stories is an important part of global community formation. These stories provide context for building relationship and needed “perspective” for spiritual formation.
As we develop relationships and learn from other members of the Global Church, culturally conditioned perceptions of the gospel (blind spots) can also be exposed. Lesslie Newbigin in his book, Foolishness to the Greeks (1986, 147), writes about the need for the global church, especially Western Christians, to listen each other’s voices, “We need their witness to correct ours, as indeed they need ours to correct theirs. At this moment our need is greater, for they have been far more aware of the dangers of syncretism, of an illegitimate alliance with false elements in the culture, than we have been. But whether it is we or they, we imperatively need one another if we are to be the faithful witnesses of Christ in our many different cultures” (147). The relationships with other members of the Global Church can enrich and balance our view of who God is, correct our interpretation of Scripture, and help expose just how much our culture has shaped our Christianity.
No longer can we as different parts of the global church remain independent of each other, for we are one body in Christ. We must listen, empathize, know, and love each other for the sake of Christ and His Kingdom.
Stories from members of the Global Church will be regularly posted on this website, and comments are encouraged.