Saturday, May 06, 2006

stan grenz and australasian theology

The latest Princeton Theological Review is dedicated to Stan Grenz. Of most interest to me was the article titled: Straddling the Tasman: The Relevance of Grenz’s Revisioned Evangelical Theology in the Australasian Context, by Brian Harris, Principal of the Baptist Theological College of Western Australia.

The article is an analysis of the impact of Grenz’s integrating motif of “community.” The article charts key moments in New Zealand, and then Australian, evangelical history. It discusses the influence of Stan Grenz to Australasia; under headings including;
– willingness to engage culture
– role of Spirit
– theological understandings of community as a missionary resource.
and a fascinating final reflection on the lack of ecology in Grenz’s work, in contrast to it’s importance, especially in New Zealand. It made me realise again what a loss Stan was and how much I miss him.

On a personal note, I was stunned

to see my work mentioned twice in the article; Footnote 10; Given its size, New Zealand is a remarkably active contributor to discussions on the emerging church. Some very impressive resources have resulted. For one example, see Steve Taylor, The Out of Bounds Church: Learning to Create a Community of Faith in a Culture of Change (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005).

Wow. My book as a “very impressive” resource. From a seminary principal. How cool is that!

And footnote 13; Anzac day, when the sacrifices made by both Australian and New Zealand soldiers are remembered, opens a range of potential missional images. An excellent study of some of the possibilities is to be found in Steve Taylor, “Scars on the Australasian Heart: Anzac Day as a Contextual Atonement Image,” New Zealand Journal of Baptist Research 6 (2001): 48-74.

For the entire article go here. For all the journal articles go here. (Thanks Steve Garner for web sleuthing to find it).

Posted by steve at 11:08 AM


  1. That is way cool! Kudos.

    Comment by Makeesha — May 6, 2006 @ 1:34 pm

  2. Stanley Grenz’s death was, indeed, a huge loss for the emergent community. I took a class with Stan in Denver shortly before his death and told him of my appreciation for the fact that he was one of the “heavyweights” providing theological cover for the emerging church in general and missional thinking in particular. And yet he was always so quietly humble and self-effacing about it all. John Franke and Dallas Willard continue to make huge contributions as do lots of others more new to the conversaton. But Stanley Grenz will be missed forever.

    Comment by Jim — May 8, 2006 @ 6:02 pm

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