• Edi­tor: Ian W. Scott (Asso­ciate Pro­fes­sor of New Tes­ta­ment, Tyn­dale Seminary)
  • Edi­to­r­ial Assis­tance: Aloma Jonker (Inter­rim Edi­tor dur­ing 2010)

Mis­sio Dei is a jour­nal geared for the whole spec­trum of Chris­t­ian lead­ers in the Greater Toronto Area and beyond. Each month you will find arti­cles here by fac­ulty and friends of Tyn­dale Sem­i­nary. The authors will explore how insights from their diverse fields of exper­tise can help you to reflect on the real work of engag­ing our com­mu­ni­ties with the Gospel.

The arti­cles in Mis­sio Dei exam­ine our work as Chris­tians through a mis­sional lens. The title Mis­sio Dei is Latin for “The Mis­sion of God.” It reflects our con­vic­tion that as a com­mu­nity of Christ-​​followers we are given the oppor­tu­nity to join in God’s own work in the world. The arti­cles assume a holis­tic under­stand­ing of God’s king­dom. As God becomes King again over his cre­ation, he invites us human beings to faith in Jesus Christ, invites us to be restored into rela­tion­ship with him­self. At the same time, he is also work­ing to heal bod­ies, soothe scarred minds, rebuild­ing frac­tured com­mu­ni­ties, re-​​orient vio­lent economies, end self­ish wars, and resus­ci­tate the cre­ation we were called to pro­tect. This all is the work Jesus began two thou­sand years ago with his teach­ing, his heal­ings, his exor­cisms, and his eat­ing with out­casts and sin­ners. This is the work made pos­si­ble by Jesus’ death for us on a Roman cross. And this is the work in which we, as Jesus’ peo­ple, are called to join. It is not a mis­sion we will fin­ish. We live in hope of the day when God will bring his king­dom to its ful­fill­ment with Christ’s return. It is, though, the mis­sion which ought to define our exis­tence as Chris­t­ian communities.

Our mis­sional frame­work for reflec­tion also means that we must think con­tex­tu­ally. The sheer scope of God’s king­dom, and of his mis­sion to make it a real­ity, means that there will be myr­iad ways in which we are called to take part. Our roles in God’s work will depend on the range of our capac­i­ties and gifts. The shape of that work will also depend on the shape of the par­tic­u­lar com­mu­nity in which we live, its needs and its bless­ings at this moment in his­tory. One size will not fit all! So, the authors who write in Mis­sio Dei will often reflect specif­i­cally on our role in God’s work here, in the Greater Toronto Area. We write for our own con­text, in the hope that our local think­ing can also pro­vide analo­gies and resources for the work of God in other places and other times.

Third, the arti­cles in Mis­sio Dei aim to be inte­gra­tive. Too often our think­ing and our work is chopped up and ampu­tated by arti­fi­cial sep­a­ra­tions and polar­i­ties. Schol­ar­ship is pit­ted against prac­ti­cal action. Evan­ge­lism is pit­ted against social jus­tice. The Sem­i­nary is pit­ted against the Church. Faith is pit­ted against care­ful think­ing. The authors writ­ing in Mis­sio Dei will approach their var­ied top­ics with the com­mon con­vic­tion that God’s work must embrace both ends of these oppositions.

Mis­sional, con­tex­tual, inte­gra­tive. This is the kind of reflec­tion you will find in the pages of Mis­sio Dei. As the con­ver­sa­tion begins in the com­ing months, we hope and pray that our reflec­tions will spark your own think­ing and spur on your own work. If you are inter­ested in con­tribut­ing an arti­cle of between 1000 and 2000 words, please send an email inquiry along with a brief (100 word) sum­mary of the pro­posed arti­cle topic to the jour­nal edi­tor, Ian W. Scott, at iscott@tyndale.ca.