Bible and ethics

The Fire in Our Words: Blessing and Cursing in a Culture of Contempt

Responding to our current culture of conflict and contempt, this presentation offers a model for peaceable speech that includes confrontation as well as collaboration. Reconciling speech goes beyond the Greek model of civility rooted on rhetoric to incorporate a biblical vision of blessing grounded in wisdom. Such reconciling speech creates a path toward healing and hope by offering testimony, inviting repentance and accepting rejection.

Gerald J. Mast

Reading the Bible, Hearing God's Word

As the “essential book of the church” (Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective, Article 4), the Bible is both a collection of ancient texts that offers a cross-cultural encounter with a distant world and the source of God’s Word that speaks with current relevance to our own world. This presentation focuses on how congregations may cross the distance between the strange world of the Bible and the present voice of God through a variety of church performance practices, such as sermons, public reading of scripture, and group Bible studies.

Gerald J. Mast