Child education as early as possible starts from the mother's womb, this gives an understanding that the importance of parent / adult education in the function to educate. Adult education can be a parent education strategy for children. According to Ismail Andar (1996), by educating adults at the same time we educate young children. Educating adults means educating teachers in the family. According to Judaism, the family is the place where God's will is revealed to the child (Ismail Andar ,1996) , Even Boehlke (2015) said that the scope of Jewish religious education was not a sideline endeavor in one corner of life, but rather a core part of daily activities (Deuteronomy 6: 4-9). So, family work is a core institution in educating children. In line with this, Andar Ismail agrees with Lewis Joseph Sherrill. Sherrill writes menulis “ The most fundamental for education is this assumption : the elemental facts of family life constitute the channel through which the will of God should first be made known to a child, and be put into effect in his living. The family was a mould into which a growing revelation of the nature and will of God could be poured without undermining the family itself. On the contrary, the growing religion strengthened the family to a rare degree. In Hebrew Thougt the family was ‘in the Lord’ and ‘he in it’. Furthermore, Ismail Andar (1996) said that today the church believes that Christian education needs to start at the age group of children as early as possible. If it is believed by the church then the strategy is to start Christian education for parents because these parents will carry out Christian education in children. In connection with PAK Life for pregnant women, the role of prenatal education is very important to be seen as a form of educational communication between mother and fetus during the womb. Baby education in the womb is a tangible form of life education. Psalms 139: 16 says "Your eyes saw me as a child, and all of your days are written in your book before any of them are written. There is an Hebrew word: Golmî (English: formless thing, embryo which is translated by the Indonesian Bible Institute with the word "future child" (Bible Works 7: 2018). God started the education process when humans were still children. This begins with God valuing life because He understood and saw while humans were still children, and wrote in His book. This means that prenatal education is a priority scale from God and must be a priority scale for the lives of God's people too.
overt focus on “evangelical doctrine,” and does not see a series of propositional truths grounded in the biblical text as being sufficient to forge a transformed life amongst believers. Therefore, a “broader” approach is proposed, where the individual believer is set within the church and the wider Christian tradition, and called to participate in the “performance” of shared practices. Chan’s two main works that I have mentioned attempt to integrate doctrine and praxis in different ways, but do so without moving towards a cohesive and fully integral approach. Though his ideas and suggestions promise more breadth and depth to spirituality, they remain highly fragmented. In light of the argument being put forward in this thesis, it is suggested that attempts such as this to move towards prescribed solutions to the “transformation problem” outside of a rational-linguistic centre, can only result in disillusionment and perpetual searching.
334 Read more
even choose not to have children in circumstances where the forming of a family may be detrimental to the well-being of the marriage or the society. The view of Hauerwas (2002:512) that Christians are called to marriage in order to build up the church is also problematic, even in the context of the remainder of his article. The same can be said of the opinion of Douma (1996:253) that voluntary childlessness conflicts with God’s intention for marriage. He maintains that those who marry must be willing to have children. In my opinion, the view that the primary purpose of marriage is procreation, even for the sake of the church, reduces marriage to the sphere of the biological and inhibits the Christian to fulfil a responsible calling in society. When planning a family the well-being of the future children, the marital relation, the church and the society should be taken into account. For example, there will be no sense in having children and to subject them to a life of poverty and perennial despair. If it is ethically sound for a marital couple to plan the number of children, as Douma argues, they may also plan to have no children under certain circumstances. However, this planning should be done with responsibility in the light of the broad biblical perspective on marriage and family and the divine vocation of a family.
19 Read more
Another Old Testament book (Job) provides a further paradigm of Christian living. It deals with the profound theological problem of the meaning and function of suffering in the life of a just man and with the consequences of it for a man‟s attitude to God (Mackenzie, 1977). The withholding of Job‟s possessions was to demonstrate whether Job‟s affections centered on the possessions or the giver of the possessions. His trust in God never wavered. God is mystery. No reason, other than God‟s goodness is required for his bestowing material possession on men; is it the absence of material possession or withdrawal of it that requires an explanation? Of course, men‟s sins could be the cause but in the case of Job, it is virtue. His possessions were withdrawn to test his virtue. He consistently recognized that the gift and giver are the same.
Among the leaders in this undertaking is Nicholas Wolterstorff, whose seminal volume Art in Action: Towards a Christian Aesthetic (Eerdmans, 1980), signals a Christian challenge to modernist aesthetics which divorce art from everyday life and regard artists as an enlightened elite responsible to no one but themselves. Wolterstorff argues that “the Christian sees the artist as a responsible agent before God,” serving both God and his creation “in the very production of his art” (78). Elitism, for the Christian, is replaced by assuming the role of obedient humble servants. Art exists not merely “for art’s sake,” but for the sake of human life, and art in God’s world, in addition to being an object for contemplation, may serve a variety of valuable functions—liturgical, social, and cultural—under the lordship of Christ.
The extent of Christian literacy bears on the question of how widely and how quickly the letters could have become known amongst Christians. The larger the number of literate Christians the more people there would have been who were able to read the letters for themselves and the more readers there would have been to read to their illiterate co-religionists. The extent of Christian literacy thus has a bearing on how quickly the story of St. Paul’s supposed relationship with Seneca would have spread amongst Christian communities. Christian literacy affects also the number of Christians who might have been encouraged by the correspondence to read Seneca’s own works. The larger the number of Christians who came into contact with Seneca’s ideas, the larger the number who could have been influenced by his version of Stoic ethics. If St. Paul himself had held Seneca in such high regard as the correspondence indicates, then there could be no harm in reading his works and there was every possibility of benefiting from them. Lactantius, after all, had stated that Seneca could be read with profit. 55 There is, therefore, a brief survey of modern opinion on the topic of ancient literacy.
42 Read more
In Part Seven, the contributors explore the complexities of the relationship between our created maleness and femaleness, the cultural practices and understandings of gender within which we are socialised, and the sense of gender identity that individual men and women experience. The contributors bring to the discussion a rich, inter-disciplinary combination of theological, medical, and cultural-studies perspectives; the result is a searching and nuanced discussion in quest of an adequate Christian understanding of issues including intersex experience, gender dysphoria, and contemporary genderqueer and transgender ideologies.
20 Read more
broad epochs. The first, lasting approximately three centuries, he terms “the age of faith”. It is only in recent decades, through such discoveries as the Dead Sea Scrolls, that we have come to see how diverse and fluid was the theology and communal life of this period. This was the time before the formulation of the creeds and before Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire. Cox sees in this time a great tolerance for diversity in worship, in leadership structures and in theology. But with the development of the imperial church, from the time of Constantine onwards, came “the age of belief”. The nature of Christian faith was codified and the many dynamic forms of communal life and ministry gradually were replaced by a common, episcopal structure. The church now became the institution of salvation. Crucially, as Cox sees it, the age of belief systematically shielded people from much of the mystery of life itself. Theology sought to “explain” the universe. Even more critically, this theology largely ignored the teaching and ethic of Jesus. 25
14 Read more
. One remarkable event during the colonial era was the development of western education. Western education led to series of changes in previous indigenous practices in Nigeria just like in other parts of Africa. The introduction of western education especially by the Christian missionaries affected virtually every aspect of societal life, namely, the social, spiritual and economic spheres. The impact of these changes on the people of Okunland can be analyzed positively and negatively. In essence, notable social changes brought about by colonial imperialism and western education produced both positive and negative impact which shall be analyzed here through the frame work of gender relations. As will be explained latter, although the people socially benefitted but the social role of the women folk was largely peripheral unlike their male counterparts who emerged as the greatest beneficiaries.
10 Read more
Another interviewee sets out the same line of argument. As they put it: ‘the kind of apologetics that I would offer around the position we take is not couched in a religious argument … in my view there is enough in science that would support the view that we take’. The use of an overtly secular language, then, is because ‘most religious groups realise that they have a particular take on reality which is not shared across the board’, but also that the findings of science and religion on issues such as the dangers of homosexuality and abortion are such that ‘in terms of the scientific data … there’s no need to appeal to the religious argument’. 76 Another representative argues that a successful defence of heterosexual marriage can be made on secular grounds because ‘science shows and studies show that children do best when raised by a mother and a father’. As they put it: ‘I think a lot of secular interfacing arguments were made because they can be made’, and that ‘I believe them from a faith perspective, from believing in the bible, but science and sociology and life backs it up, it always does … that’s the truth’. 77
30 Read more
Another interviewee sets out the same line of argument. As they put it: ‘the kind of apologetics that I would offer around the position we take is not couched in a religious argument … in my view there is enough in science that would support the view that we take’. The use of an overtly secular language, then, is not thought to be inauthentic or paradoxical because ‘most religious groups realise that they have a particular take on reality which is not shared across the board’, and because the findings of science and religion on issues such as the dangers of homosexuality and abortion are such that ‘in terms of the scientific data … there’s no need to appeal to the religious argument’ (interview #8). Making the point too, another representative argues that a successful defence of heterosexual marriage can be made on secular grounds because ‘science shows and studies show that children do best when raised by a mother and a father’, and because secular arguments are fully compatible with the religious view. As they put it: ‘I think a lot of secular interfacing arguments were made because they can be made’, and that ‘I believe them from a faith perspective, from believing in the bible, but science and sociology and life backs it up, it always does … that’s the truth’ (interview #5).
36 Read more
But how does this ‘symbolic’ approach work itself out as a specifically theological method? Chauvet claims that theologians are witnesses to a language of relationship in which they know themselves to be already held. They are themselves this language already, specifically as that language is instituted in the Scriptures, teaching, and liturgy of the Church. Thus, the question ‘who is God?’ can never be answered apart from the question ‘who is speaking of God?’ This is to understand the task of theology as thoroughly hermemeutical in Ricoeur’s sense: not the retrieval of some kind of ‘original meaning’, but the negotiation of new meanings and new practices in an ever- creative repetition of the tradition to which theology is heir. 90 That presumes, of course, that the tradition has to be read and interpreted, that it has to be engaged seriously in all its historical materiality and eventfulness. Why? Because, as Derrida says, both phonemes and graphemes are already given us in our cultural inheritance. They are the material stumbling-blocks against the metaphysical ambition for an ahistorically conceived presence-to-self of total meaning. ‘Language resists in the same way that matter resists’. 91 It is in this sense that Chauvet can say that the key theologal symbol of grace, the pure and unconditional gift of the possibility of life and freedom, is given us in the tradition as a reality that cannot be ‘stocked and stored’, or otherwise ‘objectified’ in any way. In the final analysis, while grace may be given in the tradition, it cannot be finally understood by the mind which seeks to totalise that tradition according to some kind of system or economy. Yet (and here is the paradox of Christian faith), grace as a force of resistance has the effect, not of totalising meaning from the side of God, but rather opening a space for human selves to be agents in free and innovative action. Chauvet calls this phenomenon the ‘gratuitousness’ of grace. 92 Innovations in meaning occur, then, because of the movement of ineffable grace in the language of the tradition to which theology is heir. In theological parlance, one might say that it is grace as a redoubling of Derridean differánce that gives rise to the possibility of interpretive innovation. To interpret, theologically, is to take responsibility, to posit a self in favour of the other through an engagement with the tradition. 93 Thus, neither the living self nor the Christian tradition may speak independently of each other. The tradition constantly refigures itself in the
212 Read more
There is an ever-growing number of Roman Catholic institutions that have deeply embraced the perspective of ecospirituality and a Franciscan biocentrism, in an attempt to further the emergence of the Vatican’s work for peace, justice and the integrity of creation. Among these champions have been the “green sisters,” who use an integrated ecological ethic to inform their spirituality as well as the ecojustice and social justice activism that follow from it (see McFarland Taylor). For instance, the Sisters of Saint Francis provide a link to Benedict’s 2010 World Day of Peace message on their “Peace, Justice and the Integrity of Creation” webpage. The same page also links to the Franciscan Action Networks’ campaign for Lent 2011, “Creation Crucified,” which based its organising theme on the confluence of Earth Day and Good Friday in that particular year. That campaign encouraged action and a spirituality directed toward caring for both people living in poverty as well as the rest of creation (see Sisters of Saint Francis). Such an expression of integral spirituality builds on the Vatican’s declaration of Saint Francis of Assisi as the patron saint of those who promote ecological concerns (see John Paul II, Inter Sanctos). The Franciscan Action Network cites the examples of Jesus, and Francis and Clare of Assisi in their “C4C: Franciscan Care of Creation” ecospiritual servant leadership adult formation programme. As part of this programming, the Franciscans seek to foster a spiritual energy for Christian life working toward peace, justice, and the health of the natural world, by invoking key principles of CST that inform and sustain an ecospirituality which, in turn, informs and sustains concrete action toward substantive and sustainable peace (see Franciscan Action Network).
21 Read more
This may not be the case with some of the women because, as some priests argue, Christians who mix both spiritualities may not be aware of the differences. This was explicit with some healers who argue that mixing of both should not be a problem since this is how people are being cultured. The study show that some Christian women fall within this category of being split Christians because they consult priests and then turn to traditional healers when that fails. But this can be argued differently because of the question of the elements practised by traditional healers. Not all traditional practices are wrong, as argued by the informants in the interviews. For instance, use of herbal medicine does not mean the practice is incompatible. Exorcising evil spirits and regarding Jesus as mugaa are other examples of compatible practices and contextualisation. The argument shows how Christian and traditional ways of life represent two different entities that can either harmonize or conflict. O’Donovan furthers this argument when he contends that a number of Africans in the contemporary world are being enticed towards both worlds, and that both play a big role in influencing people’s ways of thinking and decision-making. What should be noted is that he strikes a balance on both practices—both are important to African people. He indicates that disagreement arises from the collision between two worlds with totally different values and worldviews, and that people involved in such an environment suffer frustrations and end up blending both practices. Mbiti draws parallels between Christian culture and African traditional religious culture. This shows that the divergence and convergence of both cultures can be understood and drawn from different perspectives. Mbiti further sees conflicting aspects between Christian life and adherents of African traditional religion. He understands the differences as conflict between two cultures European culture and African culture rather than a religious clash (Mbiti,
The question could be asked: whose holiness is it, ours or Christ’s? Likewise in justification, whose righteousness is it, our or Christ’s? Lutherans have always stressed that it is first and foremost Christ’s righteousness that is imputed to us in justification and Christ’s holiness that is given to us in sanctification. Hence Luther’s talk of “passive holiness” or CS Lewis’s phrase “borrowed holiness”. However, Luther teaches us that whatever belongs to Christ he shares with us. To stress this point he can use nuptial imagery to talk about the Christian life in which Christ is the bridegroom and the church is his bride, and everything that he has he shares us her. Please note in passing that when we consider sanctification, it is important to speak corporately and not just individually. In other words, although it is not wrong to speak about the marriage bond between Christ and the Christian, we must never do this to the exclusion of the church. Another way of expressing the close bond between Christ and the Christian is to speak of our union in Christ. Those of you who are familiar with the new Finnish Luther research will know that the term “union with Christ” is one the ways that they propose for overcoming the separation between justification and sanctification that has sometimes crept into the Lutheran tradition. Through union with Christ, Christ’s own righteousness, which he imputes to us in justification actually becomes ours in sanctification when Christ comes to dwell within us through the Spirit.
12 Read more
ularly significant here, and Chauvet also makes the claim that ethics seeks to eradicate social sin. Most intriguing about his ethical claim is his assumption that ethical behavior that promotes the gospel mes- sage is also done for the sake of humanity. Sin is not simply an individual’s breach of relationship with God, another, or himself, but can occur at the com- munal level. Chauvet makes the theological assump- tion that the teleology of the human person is to be in relationship with God. It is this very point from which we can transition to the life and writings of Flannery O’Connor. Although she was interested in creating fiction, her aim is similar to Chauvet’s – to engender engagement with God that is formed by symbolic language used to create a Christian identity based on the interplay among scripture, sacraments, and the ethical life.
In Sense and Sensibility, Austen offers a message of “quiet morality” in life. Margaret Anne Doody writes that “[t]he novel is treated as offering a simple and satisfactory moral, in representing ‘the effects on the conduct of life, of discreet quiet good sense on the one hand, and an overrefined and excessive susceptibility on the other’” (Doody viii). While I agree with Doody’s assertion, I think Austen demonstrates more than the ‘effects on the conduct of life.’ This novel goes to the heart of how and why readers should apply “moral” behavior in their lives. Through Elinor and Marianne Dashwood and their interactions with the community at Barton, Austen shows her readers how and why they should live morally despite or in spite of obstacles, heartbreak, and uncertainties. In Sense and Sensibility Austen seamlessly folds strong didactic principles into a novel that reflects the message and traditions of eighteenth century sermons. Her ideas validate the Church and its teachings, and offer a secular method of disseminating Christian moral principles that were traditionally shared from the pulpit.
49 Read more
Jerome Davis, head of the Young Men’s Christian Association War Prisoner Aid program, was a devout Congregationalist Christian who dedicated his life to providing for the basic sport and endeavours of German Prisoners of War interned in Canadian during the Second World War. Davis had previously worked with German Prisoners of War in Russia during the First World War. Davis believed that WWII Citizens the world over, needed to change their general opposed point of view of German POWs. Davis believed that civilians need to cultivate a point of view that counteracted hostile feelings towards German POWs (moral Revisionism). Davis believed that the vilification of German POWs was wrong, short-sighted and counterproductive to the war efforts of the YMCA. Davis’ service in WWII reflect the following philosophical/religious principles: (1) cultivating concern for and practical reasoning towards POW treatment; (2) the organization needed in the provision of sporting goods; and (3) Christiaan charitable principles, based upon scriptures, that facilitated his sporting mission. To Davis, Christ’s commands: “do unto others” and “to the least of my people,” underscored his thought and practice. Salvation of German POW souls was a secondary goal to providing boredom relief, escape prevention, and dissolving Nazi mistrust of religious organizations. Davis’ desire to provide sport equipment and help in sport programming organization for German POWs was a reflection of his life’s direction and commitment. Jerome Davis desired to reach German POWs through sport and Christian love. Stark statistics conveyed within this dissertation tell merely half of Davis’ story. From 1939-1943 Davis’ energy, vigor, and commitment to cause, communicated a deeper
214 Read more
Kretschmann R, Benz C. God has a Plan: moral values and beliefs of Christian athletes in competitive sports. J. Hum. Sport Exerc. Vol. 7, No. 2, pp. 495-519, 2012. Christian athletes are people with specific and distinctive moral guidelines in everyday life as well as in competitive sports. No matter if they are competing in triathlon, athletics, or playing soccer, if they are playing in the lowest or highest division of their sport, or if they are being faced with unmoral situations, that is what we expect. They therefore stand in contrast to some athletes of today’s competitive sports who do not seem to have any guideline at all anymore, who would not shy at anything to win a competition and who therefore give competitive sports a rather negative touch. But is that really the case? Do Christian athletes fulfil this expectation? In the following study some light will be shed on the world of Christian sportsmen. Their ways of thinking, coping and acting in regard to morality in sports will be explored, interpreted and analyzed. Key words: CHRISTIAN ATHLETES, COMPETITIVE SPORTS, MORAL VALUES, MORL BELIEF, SPORT ETHICS
25 Read more
Much of the research on the perceived quality of residential environments has been restricted to urban and suburban environments with little attention paid to small rural towns. Neighborhood satisfaction has been related to various socio- economic components, but the moderating effects of individual-level demographics on the association have not been closely examined particularly in a non-urban small town setting. This study intends to assist in filling that gap and examines community satisfaction and well-being from the perspective of the residents of Colony, Alabama. The analysis was based on Wuthnow (2013) contention that small town America could be best understood from learning about and appreciating residents’ experiences and perspectives of their own community. Colony, Alabama, an example of a typical small rural town, is located in the southeastern corner of Cullman County. According to the U.S. Census Bureau (2010), the town had a total area of 2.2 square miles and a population of 268 persons. During the 1990’s the town’s population grew by 30 percent to 385 persons, however, subsequently, the town experienced an equally large population decline which has left the leaders grappling with issues about the future survival of the town. The study focuses on the notion of subjective indicators of social well-being, which rely upon and emphasize the individual perception and evaluation of social conditions. The framework of this study was grounded in the acceptance of the position that assessment of the individual’s level of satisfaction is essential for socio- economic development and improved quality of life and well- being in communities. Despite major studies that have indicated an absence of a clear theoretical link between any specific policy and any particular individual declaration of happiness, an enormous amount of literature has accepted the notion that individual evaluations of quality of life are essential to underst and ing the quality of life of nations (Kahneman and Krueger, 2006; Oluwoye et al., 2016; Lee and Sumners, 2003; Wuthnow, 2013).