Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Relationalism and Relativism in Interfaith Conversation

David R. Sawyer
Director of Lifelong Learning and Advanced Degrees, and Professor of Ministry

November 21, 2008
Acts 4: 1-13

Reacting to an advertisement in which “Evangelicals” offer respect to Jews but insist that they still must proselytize, I went to the full text of their “proof text” to see the context. I discovered there a Christological Kerygma which set up a contrast between the power of the Saduccees to enforce the status quo, and the power of the name of Jesus to bring healing and wholeness to even the most marginal. The message of resurrection represents discontinuous change and was thus threatening to the party in power in Jerusalem. The message of the passage is not about a mental assent to doctrine, but a healing, transforming relationship with God that is not exclusive. An ongoing relationship with a group of Muslim scholars who visit the seminary frequently illustrates the point of a holistic salvation. Listen to the sermon. Read the sermon in PDF.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Welcome! Taking a Chance on Love

Elizabeth Johnson Walker
Associate Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling

November 7, 2008
John 3:16 - 17, 21
Welcome! Taking a Chance on Love is a sermon that was preached in a worship service designed to introduce a project sponsored by the Cultural Diversity Committee at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary on November 7, 2008. The name of the project is “The Power of Difference and the Experience of Difference”. The title of the project and the title of the sermon express the tie-in to our new seminary “brand,” and invite a theological understanding of all sorts of difference and the promise of welcome.
Listen to the sermon. Read the sermon in PDF.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Restless for Righteousness: How to Cleanse Your Life of Idols and Worship God the Right Way

Christopher Elwood
Professor of Historical Theology

2 Kings 22:8-23:23
October 31, 2008

When Hilkiah accidentally turned up a long-lost book of the Law in the temple, Josiah, the king, was so upset to learn how far the nation had departed from what God ordained that he tore his clothes. Then he set about a vigorous campaign of worship reform. This seems a good passage to reflect on as we mark Reformation Day. The Reformation was about many things, but—at least for those who helped build the traditions that would become Reformed Protestantism—“getting our worship right” was always a central task, though always fraught with difficulty. How do we get worship right today, in a time and in places marked by enormous cultural differences? Listen to the sermon.