First of all, thank you for clicking this link!
Second of all, really? Another theology podcast and blog hosted by a couple of white dudes? Aren’t there, like, a million of those already?
We get it. Honestly, that’s one of the reasons it took us so long to actually launch this thing at all. We waffled on the idea for well over a year before actually getting serious about it just because we wanted to make sure that whatever we did would be unique, positive, and meaningful, not just add to the noise.
We first began discussing the idea of teaming up on a project like this because we were frustrated by the way the Young, Restless, and Reformed Movement seemed to have cornered the online theology market and we wanted to show folks that there are other, and, in our opinion, better options. From the very beginning, however, we knew that we wanted to do something more than just an “anti-Calvinist” podcast. We were determined to take a positive, constructive approach to theology and Christian discipleship and avoid the acrimony and exclusivist mentality that sometimes characterizes Christian podcasts—especially ones that take a “side” in the ongoing Calvinist/Arminian debate. So, in the next few paragraphs we are going to share our goals and our vision with you.
Reconstructive, Not Just Deconstructive
We are both recent seminary graduates and so we have been immersed in the world of critical biblical scholarship, which, as anyone with experience in theological education knows, can often have a deconstructive effect on one’s faith. The reality is that many of the things that we were taught about the Bible and Christianity in Sunday School just don’t hold up to critical scrutiny in the academy. This has led to an increasingly wide divide between the church and the academy. We believe this divide is both unfortunate and unnecessary. Critical study need not destroy our faith. On the contrary, while we understand that while the unlearning process may sometimes be uncomfortable, we know that it’s possible to emerge on the other side with a stronger, more robust faith. Therefore, on of our main goals with this project is to help bridge the gap between the church and the academy by demonstrating how engagement with the best biblical scholarship can help us reconstruct a holistic model of Christian discipleship that is intellectually satisfying and defensible as well as life-changingly practical.
Practical, Not Just Intellectual
One of the dangers inherent to any theological endeavor is the tendency to get so wrapped up in the intellectual that the practical is all but forgotten. There is certainly value to discussing and debating fine points of doctrine, but at the end of the day, Jesus didn’t call to his disciples to sit around and think about him or talk about him, but to actually follow him. Because we are convinced that the Christian faith is nothing if not embodied, we are committed to fleshing out the real-life, practical implications of the theological concepts that we’ll discuss. As the noted New Testament scholar Richard Hays has said, “The value of our exegesis and hermeneutics will be tested by their capacity to produce persons and communities whose character is commensurate with Jesus Christ and thereby pleasing to God.”
Conversational, Not Just Polemical
As we hinted at above, we desire to be an alternative voice amidst the sometimes cacophonous sea of Reformed theology podcasts and online ministries. While our own study of the scriptures has led us to what can be labeled a Wesleyan/Arminian perspective, and while we believe this position is based on more faithful exegesis, our intention is not simply to disprove Calvinism. The nature of this work means that we will certainly have to deal with legitimate differences in interpretation, some quite significant, but we hope to do so in a tone that is more conversational than polemical and in the spirit of genuine Christian brotherhood and sisterhood. We want to be clear that are committed to the broad Christian faith in the catholic sense. While we do have strong convictions about our theological distinctives and will be arguing for these distinctives throughout our work, we do acknowledge and affirm the breadth and diversity of the Christian tradition.
Therefore, in summation, we welcome you all to join with us in this work and we thank you for reading, listening, subscribing, rating and, if you feel led, financially partnering with us. May God be glorified above all, for God alone is holy.
Thank you, and cheers!
NQ and TLH.