Thursday, November 16, 2006

Unexpected Blows to Fatalistic Thinking

John Piper
November 15, 2006

Christians should entertain thoughts of the impossible when it comes to penetration into the most unlikely places and peoples in the world with the message and people of Christ. Fatalism based on a mere human trajectory of two thousand years is impious. Ultimately, fatalistic thinking is unbelief in the promise of Jesus, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God” (Mark 10:27). The main help in breaking the habit of fatalism is the book about God’s superhuman feats, the Bible. But God ordains others too.

One of the values of being aware of the sorts of things Philip Jenkins, of the University of Pennsylvania, writes about in The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity is that it helps explode fatalistic thinking. Just when you thought you knew how the Christian mission and the world would end, and were yawning toward Armageddon, along comes Jenkins with a story of the last one hundred years that makes you realize you must have already fallen asleep.

Interesting Quote from the Article:

"Over the past century . . . the center of gravity in the Christian world has shifted inexorably southward, to Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Already today, the largest Christian communities on the planet are to be found in Africa and Latin America. If we want to visualize a “typical” contemporary Christian, we should think of a woman living in a village in Nigeria or in a Brazilian favela. As Kenyan scholar John Mbiti has observed, “the centers of the church’s universality [are] no longer in Geneva, Rome, Athens, Paris, London, New York, but Kinshasa, Buenos Aires, Addis Ababa and Manila.” (p. 2)"

Click here for full article.

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