PDF CHRISTIAN WAY OF LIFE Applying Gods Word More Fully (January 2013)

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Then you get the first major building project in the history of humanity in the form of the Tower of Babel , which again is not exactly portrayed in an overwhelmingly positive light.

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How should Christians engage with technology? | afeditamyb.tk

So the basic principle which we need to establish when thinking about technology is this: Technology has enabled some wonderful things. But technology can also very easily become an idol in our lives. The things we create to assist us in overcoming the consequences of the curse also seek to dominate us, drawing our hearts away from God rather than drawing us toward him in dependence and faith.

Anything created has the potential to become an idol in our lives — something that we put our trust in instead of God. It can be that the technology is an idol in itself the latest iDols from Apple, perhaps? My goal here is to encourage us all just to be a little more thinking in our attitude to technology — not to reject it outright, nor to embrace it unquestioningly. Instead, to try to see beyond the superficial and to think a bit more about how it affects us, and why we feel about it the way we do.

He asks how many of the great leaders of the past would still have been elected if they were to run for office today? So, technology can change how we think. In the old days, your community was defined by your physical geography — where you lived — and primarily that usually meant your family who you shared a house with.

So does that mean I should throw away my mobile phone, close my GMail account and refuse to communicate with anybody except by snail mail? But being conscious of the way that our technology has changed us, we can be armed to think about how this might have a knock on effect for our godliness, how we relate to God and to one another. Going to church is such an alien concept in a world of mediated contact!

Both of these ways of defining the truth — consensus and relevance — have problems for the Christian, because we believe in revelation. Our technology these days increasingly leads to distraction. If we allow it to, our technology can really begin to own us, with all of the beeps and buzzes and notifications that constantly vie for our attention and drag us away from the real interactions with the people right in front of us. It can even get to the point where we find ourselves feeling quite anxious and fidgety if we have to sit with our own thoughts and nothing to distract us.

In the midst of our diversity, there is a common core that makes us both members of our own nations and members of Africa. The ASB attempts to speak with this voice. With authors from 50 countries, you can rightly say the study Bible was written in Arabic, French, Hausa, and Yoruba. In general, words are understood in context as one thing in one place might mean something very different in another context. So we must be context sensitive. This does not just apply to the Bible but to all forms of communication. You can better understand what a person is saying if you understand the context in which they are speaking.


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Let us give an example: In some cultures, reading that Jesus ate with his disciples speaks volumes about the humility of Jesus even more than Jesus washing the feet of the disciple because feet washing is not a culturally understood event in these contexts. So it is always good to understand the cultural context of a piece of communication to be able to appreciate what is happening.

So the ASB aims to both contrast and compare African and biblical culture to help us understand the Bible better. For other study Bibles, there is cultural influence, but many of those biblical resources are looking for the meaning of the text, not applying the text.

But the ASB concentrates on applying truth to a specific culture, so it is different than most study Bibles. Therefore, a study Bible should be named according to its purpose, not its culture. Notwithstanding, our interpretation of that truth, our hermeneutic, can be flawed because we are sinners being saved by grace.

10 Guidelines for Christian Living

We must note that although some of the first methods were developed by Africans, in modern times hermeneutical principles and theories were developed within a cultural milieu and context that was not African. We received these traditions which were promoted in Bible schools and this helped us greatly to understand the Bible. We need to learn from the Western historical-critical method, but also more fully integrate our understanding of things like story, ancestors, and wisdom. A great example might be our approach to suffering. Should it be in any of these categories?

Each of these is a fragment or perspective for understanding truth, a very narrow fragment at that!

This taxonomical approach to understanding reality is less about integration and more about finding truth for your group or special interest. This is true, the topics addressed in our Articles and Learn Notes came out of our initial discussion in In addition to those topics, we also addressed widows and orphans, slavery, suffering, money and possessions, parenting, marriage, cults, land and labor, politics, witchcraft and witchcraft accusations, etc.

All the issues chosen were done so with great intentionality due to the specific needs of the church in Africa. Here is one good example: As a result, different ethnic interests within a nation have caused war, poverty and great hardship. Now take the book of Joshua and think about living as twelve tribes within one nation. This is the reality the nations of Africa are living in today.

Africans can help teach the church what Joshua means to nations made of tribes that each hold traditional tribal lands. I, John, could not find a book that did not connect directly to my life as an African. It is not the book, but reading the book in our own context that creates the connection. The coordination of the many moving parts of the ASB has been a learning process. Our more than authors worked in difficult conditions, often with limited access to good internet and recent technology. In most instances, they are already burdened with great responsibility as leaders in their country.

The realities of Africa often make simple tasks more difficult.

Technology changes how we think

Further, working with this large and diverse writing team slowed the process and made quality control more difficult. Most authors had never written for a project of this nature, so extensive coaching and revisions were often required. We underestimated the requirements for this interaction.


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However, especially in areas of our weakness, we saw God provide in perfect ways. Where we are weak, he is strong. If we knew what we do now in would we have done some things differently. But overall, the story of the ASB is a story of God making our path straight and overcoming our weaknesses and lack of knowledge.

The Africa Study Bible: God’s word through African eyes / John Jusu / Matthew Elliot

It is our desire that an integrative hermeneutic emerges from the ASB that allows people to approach the text from a less biased framework, not forcing the text to fit our own framework. So both Westerners in Western study Bibles and Africans need to learn to read the Bible in a way that impacts culture but does not make our own culture the framework for interpretation. If we set a good example in this, I will be happy.


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We hope to see disciples of Jesus in Africa grow to really understand how to apply the Bible to their daily lives.