Mission In Our Post-Modern World – Part 2

The following excerpt is from Alan Hirsch’s, “The Forgotten Ways: Reactivating the Missional Church”

“No one looking at the situation of the church today can say that over the last century or so things have not fundamentally changed. The reality we deal with is that after around 2,000 years of the gospel, we are on the decline in just about every Western cultural context. In fact, we are further away from getting the job done than we were at the end of the third century. Even America, for so long a bastion of a distinct and vigorous form of cultural Christendom, is now experiencing a society that is increasingly moving away from the church’s sphere of influence and becoming genuinely neopagan. Much ink has been spilled in trying to analyze the situation. But seldom in these assessments do we hear a call for a radical rethink about the actual mode of the church’s engagement – the way it perceives and shapes itself around its core tasks. Rarely do we hear a serious critique of the often hidden assumptions on which Christendom itself stands. It seems that the template of this highly institutional version of Christianity is so deeply embedded in our collective psyche that we have inadverdently put it beyonnd the pale of prophetic critique. We have so divinized this mode of church through centuries of theologizing about it that we actually confused it with the kingdom of God… Most efforts at change in the church fail to deal with the very assumptions on which Christendom is built and maintains itself. The change of thinking needed in our day as far as the church and its mission are concerned must be radical indeed; that is, it must go to the roots of the problem.”

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