Friday, November 2, 2018

Introducing the Majority World Theology Series

I've written before about what we stand to gain when we read the Bible with the Global Church. It's getting easier to do just that.

Introducing the Majority World Theology Series.

The brain child of Gene Green, then at Wheaton College (now Academic Dean of NAIITS), K K Yeo of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, and Stephen Pardue of Asia Graduate School of Theology, this series is making a major contribution to Global Theology. With grant funding, Yeo, Pardue, and Green gather majority world scholars each year to contribute to a project on a specific theological theme written from their cultural location. They present their work at the annual meetings of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Institute for Biblical Research. It's been my privilege to witness several of these gatherings in person.

Scripture and Theology in Global Context at ETS 2015,
(left to right) Gene Green, Emily J. Choge Kerama, Jules 
Martinez, Raymond Aldred, Sung Wook Chung (photo: C Imes)
Stimulated by the conversation with other participants and observers, each contributor revises their essay for publication in a collected volume (published by Eerdmans and Langham Literature). Each chapter includes a bibliography of other sources on that theme from the author's area of the world. The result is a collage of insight from which the rest of us can learn. Philip Jenkins, author of The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity and The New Face of Christianity: Believing the Bible in the Global South, gave the series a raving review in The Christian Century

The most recent volume to be released in the Majority World Theology Series includes essays by the following global scholars on the topic of the church:

Ecclesiology (2018)
Veli-Matti Karkkainen
Ruth Padilla De Borst (Costa Rica)
Wonsuk Ma (Korea)
Stephanie A Lowery (Kenya)
Carlos Sosa Siliezar (Guatemala)
Xiaxia E Xue (China)
Peter Nyende (Kenya / Uganda)
Munther Isaac (Palestine)
Four other volumes are already available from Eerdmans (pictured above):

Christology (2014)

The Trinity (2015)

Pneumatology (2016)

Soteriology (2017)

The volume on Eschatology will release in 2019. We can all look forward to that! (Did you catch what I did there?) A seventh series of conference presentations on the topic of Scripture is tentatively planned for 2019. Hopefully that means we'll see a volume on the doctrine of Scripture in 2020.

A huge thank you to Green, Pardue, and Yeo for their excellent work on this project. Most faculty in theology and biblical studies are acutely aware of the need to listen to global voices, but these men have turned that sentiment into action. The result is both affordable and immensely valuable.