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Category: RBA
Posted by: ABradley


The late Dr. Harvie Conn, Professor of Missions at Westminster Theological Seminary, from 1972 to 1998, writes, "theology must be culture-specific in recognition of the receptor-oriented character of divine revelation." The condescension of God in communicating to his people through the Scriptures and the very example of Jesus’ incarnation paint a glaring assessment of how pathetic it is for a Black preacher/teacher to stand in front of an audience of Black folks and speak to them as if he is wearing a white powered wig and they are a group of New England Puritans.

The Black regurgitation preacher/teacher does not apply Reformed theology to issues specific to Black communities here and now. Instead, he simply regurgitates the same categories, issues, problems and polemics of a predominantly White evangelical culture that, in many ways, are foreign to the Black folks to whom he is speaking. Of course, some issues like the national epidemic of passive men transcend all neighborhoods in America, while others do not.

Theologizing, writes Conn, is dialogical in character. It is a dialogue not only within the household of faith but also with the world in which it is being applied—the culture, the religion, the politics, the economics and the social systems.

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Posted on: 04/24/07:

The Constant Gardener

Category: General
Posted by: RBAFounderMM


Ephesians 3:17 is a wonderful text. What is striking in this text and incredibly discerning when thinking on a work such as RBA is verse 17: “so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith….” The word “dwell” actually means not merely to take up residence in one’s heart but to colonize and take over one’s entire person. Paul is saying that when Christ enters one’s heart, He takes an active and exacting role in changing each part of the believer-leaving no stone unturned, no blemish untreated, no pain overlooked, no struggle unaided and no need forsaken. Christ does not simply “save” from Hell, if you will. He must drive headfirst with total commitment in presence and grace into the very core of that one forsaken. This change is radical, pervasive, comprehensive, and concrete and cannot be undone. This is the way our Christ works.

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Posted on: 04/20/07:

6s and 7s

Category: General
Posted by: RBAFounderMM
Circle of Prayer

I recently spoke with a fellow seminary student and we talked about our experiences and requirements in various classes. He told me about the requirements for one of his classes which was to attend an Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meeting. The particular group with which he was required to interact was at levels 6 and 7 in the 12-step program. After he described the scene of the room and sense of encounter to me, I perked up to receive the conclusive and valuable insight regarding how to deal with the needy. Then he said something that shocked me. “Michael, I felt more accepted and received amongst that group of individuals than I do my own church family.” I was taken aback and jolted. I expected to get valuable insight on how to attend to the needy however I realized that he along with I, had been thrust into an encounter with brokenness for which we very much wanted to be involved. Instead of identifying someone else in their brokenness as though we were observers or onlookers, he and I came to understand that we were as broken as they were and very much in the middle of our own significant struggles.

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