Vol 5, No 1, 2005

Wisdom from the Margins: Systematic Theology and the Missiological Imagination

Stephen Bevans SVD

Abstract

Post–Enlightenment theology has relegated the trinitarian doctrine of God and the theology of mission to the margins of theological reflection. Recent theology has challenged such marginalization on the basis of Church life and theology in the early Christian centuries. Biblical and patristic sources require us not only to reconsider the importance of both a trinitarian and missiological imagination, but to question the presuppositions and nature of theology itself. The author sketches out an understanding of mission that both captures current missiological thinking and shows how the marginal may actually be central for Christian life. This is followed by reflections on how this "missiological imagination" might shape the method and content of systematic theology today.