Omul evanghelic. O explorare a comunitatilor protestante romanesti

Dragi prieteni,

Vă anunț, cu un sentiment de mare ușurare, că astăzi, înainte de prânz, „după lupte seculare”, care au durat mai mult de… zece ani, am predat la Polirom textele definitive și am semnat contractul final pentru volumul Omul evanghelic. O explorare a comunităților protestante românești. Este vorba de un volum masiv, de circa 650 de pagini, format mare, ce include texte elaborate de 19 autori, din interiorul și din afara mediului evanghelic.

Volumul va apărea în librării cel mai târziu până la începutul lunii septembrie, iar până la finalul aceleiași luni va fi disponibilă și versiunea ebook.

În viitorul apropiat voi voi începe să comunic, din când în când, mai multe informații despre acest proiect editorial.

Până atunci, pentru cei interesați, iată mai jos cuprinsul volumului.

Omul evanghelic – Cuprins

 

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On Change, and Why We Hate It


Source of image, HERE)

For some time now, I have engaged in a virtual peripatetic dialogue with a young friend, at the request of his father. Although over 40 years separate us, our dialogue makes both of us discover things about ourselves and about life that we di not know much before. And, many times, good questions prove to be more important that answers, be those good ones.

Our dialogue today is about change and why we tend to refuse it, if not hate it, even when we know is absolutely necessary and unavoidable.

* * *

Q – Why is change so difficult? Change, in itself, is good and beneficial in the sense that it allows us to progress and surmount naturally lazy tendencies, leading to the attainment of a broader mindset and generally greater understanding of this thing we call “life”. So, if we know that change is progress, why is it so hard sometimes? I know that there is also a human, emotional element, and, on the topic, Gibran says that sorrow is like a canyon into which joy pours in, so, logically, the deeper the canyon, the more water it can hold. Knowing this, and knowing that joy and sorrow go together and are part of life, why does this concept of change still frighten and sometimes sadden us so?

A – Humans are essentially conservative, complacent beings. This may be, at the psychological level, another implication of the law of entropy.

Change is painful, and that is, probably, another reason we run away from change. Nobody likes pain. Yet, without pain there is no growth nor maturity. Continue reading “On Change, and Why We Hate It”

Derwin L Gray – Do We Have Discipleship Wrong?

In the American educational system, from first grade all the way up through high school, we’re taught to memorize INFORMATION, and then take a test. If we pass the intellectual test, then we move on to the next grade.

We’ve transferred this learning pattern to Christianity. We’re trained to learn biblical concepts, principles, and doctrines intellectually. And the more biblical information we know, the greater disciples we are deemed to be.

I think this is killing the church in America, just like it hurt the Pharisees.

Let’s remember that the Pharisees—an elite group of well-educated men in Israel—knew the Scriptures, but they missed the main point of the Scriptures: to know JESUS personally and intimately (Phil. 3:5-11). Jesus said, “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to Me!” John 5:39 NLT

Knowing the Bible doesn’t give us eternal life; knowing Jesus does. (John 17:3)

Some people love the Bible more than they love Jesus.

HEAD, HEART, HANDS

I’m all for learning about Jesus and the Christian faith. I have a Master’s of Divinity with a Concentration in Apologetics (magna cum laude). I’m currently pursuing my Doctorate of Ministry with a Concentration in ‘New Testament in Context’ under New Testament scholar Scot McKnight, Ph.D.

BUT,

if all my learning does not produce more love for Jesus, myself, and people, then I’ve wasted my time. (1 Corinthians 13)

If all that learning doesn’t cultivate more love in my heart, then I wouldn’t be a disciple—I’d be a gatherer of biblical facts. Gatherers of biblical facts don’t transform the world; disciples do. I want to be a disciple. And I want the church I’ve been called to shepherd to be a community of disciples who make disciples who make disciples. Jesus said, “You will know my disciples by the way they love one another.” (John 13:35)

The Apostle Paul says to the Philippian Church,

I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—for this will bring much glory and praise to God. Philippians 1:9-11 NLT

The “fruit of your salvation” is the fruit of the Spirit,

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Galatians 5:22-24 ESV

When our minds are in awe of Jesus and our hearts are overflowing with the love of Jesus, we become the hands of Jesus by serving people because we love them.

Marinate on that.

(Source, Christianity Today.)

Building A Case for Mentoring in University Education

mentoring

Education, in the fullest sense of the word is not about filling one’s mind with facts – that is basically the Romanian educational system’s approach – this is superfluous at teh time of Internet and search engines. Nor is it about merely acquiring skills for the work market, as the neo-liberal approach to education would suggest.

In its times tested understanding, education is about acquiring wisdom for right living. From the time of antiquity, with an unfortunate hiatus is modernity, which is slowly overcome at present, the best way of becoming wise and competent in life matters is under the influence of a master. That is called, in biblical terms, discipleship, and in the contemporary formation vocabulary it is called MENTORING. Surprisingly, this concept was abandoned by the majority of Christians, and was rediscovered by the world of business. It is time that Christians, and, why not, educationalists, catch up now.

A recent article in Gallup Business Journal calls mentoring ‘the biggest blown opportunity in the history of higher ed’. Here are a few highlights from it.

A few months after Gallup released findings from the largest representative study of U.S. college graduates, there is much to ponder. The Gallup-Purdue Index surveyed more than 30,000 graduates to find out whether they are engaged in their work and thriving in their overall well-being. In simple terms, did they end up with great jobs and great lives? Continue reading “Building A Case for Mentoring in University Education”

YWAM Iasi – Mission Training Program 2014-2015

YWAM Iasi poster

If you are someone who seeks to know the truth, desires to live abundant life and dares to be challenged in order to become the person God intended for you to be, then…

Come and join us this fall!

University of the Nations and Youth With A Mission Iasi invite you to the 3rd eddition of our training program which will begin on 1 October 2014 and will end on 30 June 2015, in the following format: Continue reading “YWAM Iasi – Mission Training Program 2014-2015”

David Platt – Why People Don’t Make Disciples

David Platt is pastor of Brook Hills Church in Birmingham, Alabama, a church I have visited a number of times while I was fundraising for Richard Wurmbrand College in Iasi, Romania.

Platt is one of the youngest megachurch pastors in the US.

He talks here about one of my favourite topics: discipleship. Here is what he has to say

Tabara de la Voronet, 1981

Voronet, 1981
De la stinga la dreapta si de sus in jos: Danut Manastireanu, Viorel Gaga, Ronela (Pintican) Bodiu, Tudorel Sfatcu, Orest Onofrei, Liviu Mocan, Beni Faragau, Benisor Faragau, Dorotheea (Manastireanu) Ardeleanu, Doinita Prelipcianu, Danut Prelipcianu,  Nora Faragau, Daniela Gaga, Mihaela Manastireanu, Luminita Mirauta, Daniel Manastireanu (ascuns dupa Luminita), Ligia Pintican, tanti Tinca (bucatareasa), Zena Bordei, Erszo Sfatcu, Mariana Sain-Morar, Corina (Sfatcu) Shtir, Rodica (Bocaniciu) Mocan. Continue reading “Tabara de la Voronet, 1981”