Why Should it Matter that Christians Have a Reformed World View?
A Case Statement for the ministry of Christian education.
It matters because Christ has called us to engage the world, not run from it.
To a Reformed Christian, the “world” is more than just a source of temptation. It’s a responsibility. So instead of condemning culture, Reformed Christians contribute to it. Instead of fearing the intellect, Reformed Christians develop it. Instead of wagging their fingers, Reformed Christians reach for the stars.
Because they know that God’s sovereignty extends beyond the sanctuary to every city, state and country on earth. And that the church’s purpose is not to passively await Christ’s coming, but to prepare the way.
Yet vital as it is, Reformed world view comes not from simply attending a Reformed church, but from a lifetime of careful discipling. It comes from using the unique tools developed by the Christian Education and Publications ministry of the PCA.
For it is through CEP that tens of thousands of Christians have their best opportunity to develop not just a heart for God, but a mind as well. And it’s making all the difference in the world.
It matters because the Bible’s principles apply not just to the church, but to the whole world.
Theoretically, today’s evangelical could spend his or her entire life avoiding the secular world. Thanks to Christian cable networks, magazines and music. Not to mention T-shirts, refrigerator magnets and work-out tapes.
But Reformed Christians refuse to live in an evangelical ghetto. They know that God’s Word is not just a refuge for the church–it’s a legal and ethical guidebook for all human society. Without it, any man-made culture is ultimately doomed to fail.
That’s why CEP seminars and materials are always biblically based, and strive to give every Christian an intimate, deeply personal knowledge of God’s Word.
But while other programs may stop there, CEP desires to raise up Christians who are also capable of applying the Scriptures in the outside world–who are articulate champions of biblical truth in the courts and legislatures, in the arts and media and schools.
Because in the end, the Bible is not a plan of escape but a platform for action. In the end, a Christian subculture is no substitute for a truly Christian world.
It matters because the Reformation is not just our heritage, but the world’s hope.
In the PCA, the Reformation is more than just an echo of the past. It is nothing less than the clearest, truest expression of the biblical faith.
That’s why CEP materials focus the Scriptures through the lens of Reformation theology, particularly the Larger and Shorter Catechisms and the Westminster Confession of Faith. This is what gives the PCA its unique identity as a covenant community.
For it is in mastering the rigors of Reformed theology that Christians learn to use their minds, and develop a logical framework for their faith. Asking and answering pre-suppositional, conceptual and integrative questions about all areas of truth.
But while learning theology is important, Christian Education & Publications also empowers Christians to “do” theology.
So that instead of simply memorizing historical creeds, Reformed Christians can make history of their own. Applying theology in ways that will transform their lives, their communities, their world.
It matters because if we aren’t equipped to shape the world, the world will shape us.
If there’s one thing the PCA doesn’t lack, it’s opportunities for being equipped to do the work of ministry.
This year alone, 2,000 church leaders and teachers will attend CEP conferences to sharpen their theology, their spiritual gifts and their practical skills; and receive support and encouragement in ministry.
One hundred churches in the PCA participate in a variety of special workshops covering everything from youth ministry to discipling, conducted by CEP’s regional teams of dedicated “Teacher Trainers.”
Written from a Reformed perspective, CEP’s Great Commission Sunday school curricula help shape the lives of young covenant children, youth and adult disciples.
And through Women in the Church, or WIC, CEP conducts training seminars and other conferences designed to help thousands of women develop their lay ministries and make a contribution to the life of the church.
Together, these ministries are slowly but surely shaping a generation of Christians who are fully equipped to engage their culture. And take on the world.
Christian Education and Publications. Because it matters.
To gauge just how well the Reformed faith meets modern needs, consider this: the PCA is one of the fastest-growing denominations in the world.
And with the rapid expansion of young churches comes an escalating need for CEP services. CEP’s ministry is specifically targeted to help all those new leaders, teachers and officers build on a firm foundation.
Will you support the efforts of CEP with your prayers and your financial gifts?
Although CEP’s services are paid for, to some extent, through purchases and tuition fees, our overall administrative costs often go unaddressed. And our visions for the future–including strategic new services now under development–are entirely dependent on supporters like you.
Here is a rare opportunity for you to point thousands of people in a direction that is not only thoroughly Christian, but truly Reformed. Here is a way for you to do something that matters. Not just for your denomination. But for the whole world.