Addenda Volume 2.6 (June 2019)

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Considerations: A Devotional

Loving God with All Your Mind

In Mark 12:28-34 an educated man—a teacher of the law—tests Jesus in a legal matter: What’s the most important commandment? Jesus says there is one command with two parts: love God and your neighbour as yourself. Significantly, however, Jesus alters the Deuteronomic text (6:4), which called for loving the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and strength. To that combination, Jesus adds loving God with all your mind.

A Jewish law professor would have known this passage well, and pious Jews would have recited it twice a day. The change Jesus makes, suggested theologian Neal Plantinga, is like changing the familiar bedtime prayer to say: “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my brain to keep.” People would certainly have noticed.

Why the change? I think that Jesus is insisting on a complete all-of-life passion for God and his kingdom. He’s being asked a question by a smart man, so he intentionally includes the mind in the call to surrender one’s life to God. There are no loopholes around the pervasiveness of the love command.  

I once asked a Christian economics student what a kingdom-of-God perspective would imply regarding risk and fair wages, and he replied with the phrase, “Hey, I don’t make the rules, I just follow them.” This student assumed that the Christian mind relates to prayer, worship, and churches, but for the rest of life—economics, politics, and so on—he could just follow the dominant culture of the day.

May it not be so with us. There is not one sentence of any university curriculum, no theory or method, and no discipline or profession to which the call to love God with all our mind does not apply. We cannot love God with all our soul and live with a secular mind. This love, especially seen in the light of the “wondrous cross,” demands our soul, our life, our all.

Peter Schuurman, Ph.D.
CEO, Global Scholars Canada

Society News

Dr. Dinshak is Lecturer in the Center for Conflict Management and Peace Studies at the University of Jos, Nigeria. Dr. Dinshak earned his Ph.D. in International Relations and Strategic Studies.

Dr. Li Ma, Society of Christian Scholars Executive Committee member, earned a Ph.D. in sociology from Cornell University. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics at Calvin College in Grand Rapids. She is author of Religious Entrepreneurism in China’s Urban House Churches: The Rise and Fall of Early Rain Reformed Presbyterian Church, Routledge Studies in Religion (Rougledge, 2019); The Chinese Exodus: Migration, Urbanism, and Alienation in Contemporary China (Pickwick Publications, 2018); and coauthor (with Jin Li) of Surviving the State, Remaking the Church (Pickwick Publications, 2017), which won recognition as Ten Outstanding Books of Mission Research in 2017 by the International Bulletin of Mission Research.

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“But right after I joined the Society of Christian Scholars I noticed that editorial services were offered––free for all full members! 

“So I sent in the manuscript [to the Society’s Senior Editor] and immediately got an encouraging and insightful response back. Even though the editorial services team member wasn’t familiar with my field, his feedback showed me exactly where I was not being clear enough, so I could zoom in on the problem paragraphs. He even copyedited the paper for me, making it more succinct and ‘academic-sounding’. Only a week after re-submitting [my] revised paper, I got a notice from the journal editor saying ‘your paper turned out really nice.’ 

“That’s never happened to me before! A big thank you to the editorial services team! I benefitted so much from your service!”


Upcoming Events

Webinar: Missions in a Moving World – Friday, 14 June 2019 at 1300 GMT
As part of the Lausanne World Workplace Forum, this webinar will explore the inextricable connection between migration and mission as dispersed people have always had an impact on the advancement or decline of the Christian faith in different places and times. This scattering brings people closer to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and diasporization is creating new momentum for the furtherance of the gospel globally. Please r
egister here

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Addenda Volume 2.6 (June 2019)

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