Dear WesleyNexus Colleague:
The first Sunday in June, Christians all over the world celebrated Pentecost, remembering the time when Jews from many nations came together to form the community of Jesus. In Acts 2, Luke tells the story of how the spirit like a great wind descended upon them. They suddenly were able to understand one another even though they did not speak the same language. All were amazed. This legendary story was written over half a century after the events leading to the founding of Christianity. While scholars can debate how much is history and how much is legend, one thing is clear. Once the Christian community came together under the lordship of Jesus, a critical question needed to be addressed: “what next”? It is clear that something profound happened. However, after the excitement of the moment faded, the early church had to face an uncertain future. The band of spirit-filled followers was transformed by an experience of power and hope. Then what? What were they called to do? What was their mission? What was their purpose?
The rest of Acts provides a narrative of how this community pulled together to live in the world dominated by Roman power and Greek learning. It was a pagan world filled with many gods and many faiths. Our era, after 2000 years of being defined by Christianity, is now fragmenting into many pieces, both secular and religious. But one force affects them all: science. Science and its technological offspring are ubiquitous. North, South, East or West, there is no place on the globe where scientific knowledge has not reached.
This month we are focusing on the resources and insights of Biologos. Biologos began in 2007 as
the brainchild of Dr. Francis Collins. In 2006, his book The Language of God: A Scientist Presents
Evidence for Belief became a national best seller. Responding to the many questions his readers sent to him by email, he and a group of students built a website and began to answer the question “what next?”
Like the community in Acts, Collins and his fellow Biologos companions proceeded to present what it
means to be a believing Christian in our time. Please check out the information below and the links
included. Biologos is within the spirit of Pentecost when they say: “BioLogos invites the church and the
world to see the harmony between science and biblical faith as we present an evolutionary nderstanding of God’s creation”.
Perhaps a bigger challenge for the Christian community is to pull together in spirit the various strands of
understanding across the entire fabric of the world-wide church. The focus of Biologos is strongly reedal
and evangelical. In last month’s newsletter, views from the pluralistic progressive perspective were
presented. Can these threads be brought together to form a single fabric with many colors and designs? We at WesleyNexus hope so and try to encourage understanding across various perspectives. We will continue to include a wide range of viewpoints since the Wesleyan tradition has never been a single thread but a weaving together from many strands. The Wesleyan tradition stands for unity in loving spirit but non-uniformity in ideas or practice.
Rick, Maynard, and the rest of the
WesleyNexus Board of Directors