TULIP Transformed for Mission

| March 24, 2015


Over the past several years I’ve assessed potential church planting candidates in both Acts 29 and Sojourn Network. I’ve interacted with scores of young, passionate men ready to start churches that are gospel-centered, Reformed, and missional. While for the most part they could pass any confessional test, many of them don’t know how to do theology. They have a theological confession but not theological vision. They lack the vision and ability to connect what they know with how they plan to creatively and constructively advance the mission of God in the world.

Theological confession is, by definition, defensive and classically expressed in series of affirmations and denials. This is good and necessary. But successful church planting, ministry, and even the Christian life needs more than confession; it needs theological vision. This concept of theological vision explains how so many churches have similar confessions and yet radically different and even competing expressions of ministry. Without the clarity of a comprehensive theological vision, we succumb to emphatic theology with no connection between all the different fragments of theology and the arenas of our lives.1 As Tim Keller argues, if theological confession is our hardware and methodological strategy our software, we desperately need the theological “middleware” of vision to bring our confession to life and inform our methodology. This is an extension of Richard…


To read the rest of this article, visit http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/tulip-transformed-for-mission.