Phil Vischer Podcast: Andy Crouch, Missionaries, Grace

Notes:

  • The grace conversation starts around minute 39
  • Andy Crouch: The Apostle Paul talks about his own calling consistently with the phrase “the grace given to me” He’s talking about his mission to the Gentiles. For Paul his calling was grace. Grace was calling.
  • Skye: We always use grace synonymous with forgiveness. From Dallas Willard: “Grace is God’s power to achieve in your life to do what you could not on your own.” That includes forgiveness.  Willard asked “Did Adam require God’s grace before he sinned? Absolutely, because he only lived by the grace of God.”
  • They start talking about Playing God  about minute 41
  • Power is about the divine image. Who is the source of power in our cosmos? Any use of power is going to either be aligned with the true god, or it will play a false god, image a false god. We human beings are made to image God. The image bearers are given tremendous power but we shirk our image bearing and we play false gods which is called injustice, to dominate and exploit. How can we recover the true image? To look at the power we have and assess whether we’re using it properly.
  • We don’t talk about power enough to have a well developed understanding of it. (We talk about power the same way the church used to talk about sex.) Go back to the original gift of the thing.
  • Power is the deepest gift. It is what makes us human.
  • Vischer: What do you do in a culture where Christians strived for political power so aggressively and the rest of the nation found it so repulsive?
  • Crouch: Political power is always coercive power. It is the power to get a minority to do what they would rather not do.  We had this idea that if we could make people be Christian we would have a Christian society.
  • The biblical view is that there is a much deeper power than coercion, and it’s creation (think power under NOT power over HT Boyd, pvk) . The power to bring something into being that wasn’t here before. It’s about every human activity that brings fruitfulness. Christians need to be known not for picking up whatever coercive power we can get but to create things that make space for human beings and the whole of creation to flourish. If we were known for that people would still resist the gospel because the gospel asks you to die to yourself but we would have much more credibility than that generation that thought “if we could just get our hands on the levers of political, coercive power we could get something done.” That’s not the way the creator god did it.

About PaulVK

Husband, Father of 5, Pastor
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