Newbigin, Lesslie. The Open Secret: An Introduction to the Theology of Mission. Rev. ed. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans, 1995.
The Author: Lesslie Newbigin
“Born in Newcastle upon Tyne, Newbigin’s elementary and high school education took place in Leighton Park, the Quaker public boarding school in Reading, Berkshire. He went to Queens’ College, Cambridge in 1928. On qualifying, he moved to Glasgow to work with the Student Christian Movement (SCM) in 1931. He returned to Cambridge in 1933 to train for the ministry at Westminster College, and in July 1936 he was ordained by the Presbytery of Edinburgh to work as a Church of Scotland missionary at the Madras Mission.
Hunsberger, George R., and Craig Van Gelder, eds. The Church between Gospel and Culture: The Emerging Mission in North America. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1996.
This book is a collection of essays written in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Many of them are in response to the work of Lesslie Newbigin as he responded to the post-Christian culture of England and greater Europe. Newbigin’s questions spread to the United States and Canada, sparking theologians and church leaders to reevaluate the relationship of the church to the Gospel and to culture. These essays and the authors behind them formed the core of the Gospel and Our Culture Network in the mid 1990s.
Newbigin, Lesslie. Foolishness to the Greeks: The Gospel and Western Culture. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1986.
(this reflection was originally written in January, 2012 for the course Vocation of the Theologian) God reignited my call to ministry in 1994. I was convinced that if I were to be an effective leader in the church that I would need to pursue higher education and seek a Masters of Divinity, and perhaps a PhD someday. I lived in the desert—both metaphorically and literally. Las Vegas was not ripe with higher theological education, so I was at a loss as to which school I should allow to shape me into the man of learning and wisdom I thought I should be.
Newbigin, Lesslie. The Gospel in a Pluralist Society. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans; WCC Publications 1989.
“If the gospel is to challenge the public life of our society, if Christians are to occupy the “high ground” which they vacated in the noontime of “modernity,” it will not be by forming a Christian political party, or by aggressive propaganda campaigns. Once again it has to be said that there can be no going back to the “Constantinian” era. It will only be by movements that begin with the local congregation in which the reality of the new creation is present, known, and experienced, and from which men and women will go into every sector of public life to claim it for Christ, to unmask the illusions which have remained hidden and to expose all areas of public life to the illumination of the gospel. But that will only happen as and when local congregations renounce an introverted concern for their own life, and recognize that they exist for the sake of those who are not members, as sign, instrument, and foretaste of God’s redeeming grace for the whole life of society.” (pp. 232-233)
Toward a Missional Spirituality in the Suburbs