The conference, the first of its kind, is sponsored by Missio Alliance and called The Future of the Gospel: Renewing Evangelical Imagination for Mission.
I am not generally a fan of mega-conferences. But Missio Alliance—I have reason to hope—is different.
Here are several reasons why I am planning to attend this first national gathering of Missio Alliance.
1. The focus is understanding the church’s role in the missio dei; that’s Latin for “God’s mission” in the world. As I’ve argued elsewhere, America is changing. The world is changing. And the church needs to be up to the task. It’s not about embracing the latest techniques and technologies; it’s about gaining a deep understanding of how the church is to operate in the world.
2. The posture is dialogue. This is not just another “sit and listen while superstar leaders expound the mysteries of life and ministry” conference. It’s a theology forum; it’s designed to engage participants in meaningful, significant thinking and dialogue to discover the best ways to live out our mission in the world.
3. The questions are the right ones: “What is the gospel? Where is the kingdom? How does the authority of Scripture operate? What does all this mean for mission?” Those are the kinds of things I want to talk about—the issues the church needs to occupy itself with, if we’re to meet the challenge of the next ten years, let alone the next fifty.
4. The facilitators include some of the voices I most respect in the church today, those who have been wrestling with these issues for quite some time—Scot McKnight, David Fitch, Dallas Willard, and many others. In other words, there’s a trust factor for me.
5. The alliance offers an alternate voice. I have great respect for guys like Tim Keller and D. A. Carson, and others at The Gospel Coalition. But my theology and perspective are neither Reformed nor neo-Reformed. Missio Alliance has a broader perspective that embraces me and where I’m coming from.
And full disclosure, the organization I work for is helping to sponsor the event (the link is a PDF about sponsorship), and they are making it possible for me to attend. So there’s that too.
The next registration deadline is coming on March 15, so if you think you might be interested, explore the conference web site, and make plans to attend right away.
I’m looking forward to seeing several people there that I’ve had online conversations with but have never met in person. I would love to meet you too!