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:: Theology with an Ecclesial Edge :: Is the academic theology of the seminary classroom insufficient for the daily pastoral grind? In this podcast, Gerald Hiestand, the President of the Society for the Advancement of Ecclesial Theology, talks about his vision for this newly founded society and how the Pastor-Scholar model helps meet a desperate need in the local church.
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Maybe it’s because we’re so humble. . . heeding the advice of Solomon to let another man praise us and not our own lips. Or perhaps its because we’re so consumed with our own callings that we’re oblivious, except for our general faith that God is at work, to the massive, intricate, and exciting story that God is weaving on a daily basis with our work and the work of brothers and sisters we have never met. Regardless of the reason, the fact is simple – the Church isn’t all that good at telling its story. By “story” I don’t mean the elements of the Gospel that we are so committed to preach, but the vastly bigger picture of that Gospel working revolutionary change in people and communities all over the globe. We hear testimonies of individuals often in our local congregations when a dramatic conversion occurs or when a missionary comes home to visit, but there exists no entity with the vantage point to compile the stories of individual leaders and local bodies in the cities of men into the expansive landscape that is the daily growing city of God — until now. On January 5th, U R B A N G L O R Y will begin exposing the expansion of the Kingdom in cities all over the world by broadcasting the stories of prominent and every day church leaders, innovative ministries, influential scholars, and revolutionary professionals who are all threads in the incredible tapestry that God is weaving to spread his Glory to the nations. We invite you to be the first to check it out and let your friends know as well. The future of this exciting new platform depends on your involvement.
Our first podcasts for 2009 will include …
Johnny Hunt talks about his agenda for his upcoming term as president of the SBC, and shares his thoughts on the Calvinism vs. Arminianism debates within the SBC.
Gerald Hiestand clarifies his unconventional views on dating and sexual purity and lets us in on his passion for the new SAET Society, the Society for the Advancement of Ecclesial Theology.
Aaron Skinner of Kairos Creative challenges the church to think differently about the role of brand development for community presence and the sake of the gospel.
Matthew Elliot shares his story about coming to grips with the role of emotion in the Christian life during his Ph.D. studies that culminated into his high-praised books Faithful Feelings and Feel.
This past Monday and Tuesday, October 13-14th, saw history in the making. The first ever SAET symposium was held at Calvary Memorial Church in Oak Park, Chicago, where Todd Wilson, one of the board members of the society, is the pastor. SAET is pronounced, sat, and stands for Society for the Advancement of Ecclesial Theology.
A small group of 13 to 15, composed of mostly pastors, came together in Chicago for the symposium. This year’s theme was Resurrection, and several papers were presented and discussed. Gordon Conwell’s New Testament professor Scott Hafemann, although he did not present a paper, gave oversight to the symposium and all the discussions. Gerald Hiestand, the president of the SAET Society also discussed the future of the SAET Society and facilitated discussion around potential directions for SAET.
While the vision for SAET is still coming together, those who attended the first symposium were enthusiastic about the benefit of starting this new community of fellow pastor-scholars. Among the group was David Rudolph, a messianic Jewish pastor from Los Angeles who is helping develop the first ever Masters of Divinity degree that specializes in messianic Jewish theology, Stephen Witmer, a pastor of a church in Maine, and Owen Strachan, the managing director of the Carl F.H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Chicago.
“It was sort of intimidating for me,” said Bradley Cochran, one of the attenders. “Most of these guys are Cambridge or Oxford graduates with Ph.D.’s. Gerald’s vision for the SAET has birthed new discussions on important issues surrounding the heart of the gospel message itself, and the vision for the Society I found irresistible.”