Author(s): Darren T. Duerksen; William A. Dyrness
New expressions of church that are proliferating among Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and other non-Christian religious communities, including so-called insider movements, have raised intense discussion in missiological circles. In Seeking Church, Darren Duerksen and William Dyrness address these issues by exploring how all Christian movements have been and are engaged in a "reverse hermeneutic," where the gospel is read and interpreted through existing cultural and religious norms. Duerksen and Dyrness draw on the growing social-scientific work on emergent theory--the concept that social communities arise over time in ways that reflect specific historical and cultural dynamics. This is a missiological process, they argue, in which God has always worked through people and their culture to shape his witness in the world. They illustrate emergent theory through historical and contemporary case studies and consider the church's contextualized nature by exploring biblical models of the church, worship practices as emergent, and ecclesial markers that identify emerging churches and their distinctive witness. For missiologists, theologians, practitioners, and all who ponder the challenge and opportunities of mission among other religious communities, Seeking Church offers a multidisciplinary conceptual framework with which to understand the global diversity of the body of Christ. The Spirit is constantly drawing people toward God's community, causing new expressions of church to emerge and thus displaying new facets of his work and character.