(YTC Press: UK: 2008)
I LOVE this book! Ian Mobsby writes more of my own thoughts than anyone else I have ever read. It is so exciting to know someone whose been travelling the same road totally separately and discovering very similar things along the way. Indeed, this is not just a phenomena specific to me, but something Ian writes is happening all over the world in emerging church communities – a rediscovery of the God who is Trinity to lead us into renewed ways of being church, doing theology, living a response to the bible, prayer, mission and so on!
God who is Trinity draws us into knowing God through our lived experience rather than a set of objectified facts. God fills our imagination with the possibilities for wholeness in the world, as God fills our hearts with Love and redeems our minds by Grace. This is theology that I can get excited about!
In outlining his own vision of the Trinity draws on an incredibly diverse range of theological thinkers: Walter Bruggemann, Pete Rollins, Karl Barth, Brian Edgar, The Cappadocian Fathers and Mothers, Kester Brewin, Paul Tillich and Stuart Murray. Ian’s main concern however, is to connect our transformational experiences of God to a transformational life. “The decline experienced by the Western Church through-out the period of modernity and now in post-modernity, is due in the main to an inedequate theism. Conceptions of God as one’s best friend, or as excessively immanent or transcendent, are the result of a faiture to accept the validity of, and move beyond, the critique of the enlightenment emancipators.” (p.35) The book reviews models of church; challenges of mission in post-modernity; contextual theology; and the challenge of living communally, in light of a replenished encounter with God.
In summing up, Ian Mobsby’s words sum up the reason why I am setting aside 2011 to study: “Theology is the place where God speaks into human discourse, and that as we do mission, it point people to the divine. Religious truth is that which transforms reality rather than that which describes it. In worship and mission we seek to contemplate God, who in turn touches and communicates with humanity. If Church is truly modeled on this approach, it will meet deeply with contemporary culture” (p. 143). Amen!