Thursday, March 12, 2009

Book Review: Coffeehouse Theology

Book Review: Coffeehouse Theology

I stumbled on Contextual Theology purely by accident. While in seminary, in 1977, my wife and served as chaperons for a group of high school students who were holding Vacation Bible Schools for eight weeks in the upper Midwest of the United States. On the Sunday morning we were invited to attend Sunday School at the church scheduled for next week's program. One question caught my attention, “What are the problems of cities?” Having lived in cities all my life, I expected answers such as “pollution”, “crime”, or “isolation”. But the answer that was agreed to by most in attendance that day was “the destruction of prime agricultural land.” It was Contextual Theology, except I did not know it until I read Ed Cyzewski's book Coffeehouse Theology.

Coffeehouse Theology explores the implication of Contextual Theology for the church today. The author recognizes that each person who reads scripture does so from their own perspective. They bring to the scripture their own biases, their own history, their own successes, hurts, and desires. Those things that make us unique can influence how we read and study scripture. By balancing our understanding of scripture with our interaction with Christians from different cultures and different eras, allows them to help us grow. Then we can better understand the God who loves all mankind. Ed Cdyzewksi provides resources and tools allowing us to do just that.

The book comes with a strong recommendation to those who have not read previously on this subject.

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