In view of a holistic and integrated understanding of Christian discipleship, this paper explores the relationship of Christian involvement in the secular domain on the one hand and the calling to evangelize on the other. With reference to examples from the life of the church in Africa, it shows that often one of the mandates is highlighted at the expense of the other, or that both exist side-by-side in the Christian life without proper integration. It is argued that all these three options render the church vulnerable to secularization, particularly “the secularization of desire.” This paper approaches the question from a systematic theological angle by examining the relationship between the creation mandate and the mission mandate. It argues that both mandates are linked in Christ’s role as Savior of creation in its entirety and because Christ also is the goal of creation. Christian investment in the creation mandate therefore presupposes the saving work of Christ and needs to find its fulfillment in him. It finally proposes to understand the relationship between the two mandates as a “double helix” where the two are always intimately related yet can never be reduced to either one.
|Title of host publication||Is Africa Incurably Religious? |
|Subtitle of host publication||Secularization and Discipleship in Africa|
|Editors||Benno van den Toren, Joseph Bosco Bangura, Dick Seed|
|Place of Publication||Oxford|
|Number of pages||17|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|
|Name||Regnum Studies in Mission|