Given the widening chasm between science and faith in the modern era, the prevailing belief is that educated and informed people cannot truly believe the claims of Holy Scripture without abandoning the facts of science. Facts and faith seemingly are incompatible.
John Stott (1921-2011) was an international Evangelical leader who served as curate and rector (pastor) of All Souls Langham Place in London, England for thirty years (1945-1975). He later founded the Langham Partnership where he lectured, wrote, and preached across the world on the foundational authority and trustworthiness of the Bible as a compatible text with scientific discovery and claims. One of his most famous books was a volume on preaching – Between Two Worlds: The Challenge of Preaching Today.
Stott believed Christian preaching should close the gaps of time and context between the written text and the modern era through careful study of the words of the Bible as well as their timeless meaning for a world in constant change. Stott’s preaching was marked by an extraordinary capacity to simply allow the Bible to speak openly both in the public sanctuaries of the church but also in the lecture halls and laboratories of the academy. He believed the local church should be engaged in ways that would carefully and critically address issues of scientific complexity and theological truth. Pastors were key to this advancement in local communities across the world.
The John Stott Award for Pastoral Engagement was created to support pastors and congregations who are willing to venture into the intersection of science and theology with confidence in the truthfulness of Scripture and in open and earnest dialogue with the insights of modern science
Dr. Raymond Johnson, Pastor of The Journey Church, has been named a 2017 Stott fellow who will be addressing the topic “Affirming the Doctrine of Creation in an Age of Science.” Dr. Johnson will be preaching and teaching on how the New Testament authors — particularly in the Gospels and the Pauline epistles — apply the doctrine of creation.
The Journey Church will host a series of events during its regular Sunday Night Theology (SNT) seminars throughout 2017-2018. The first event will be with University of Pennsylvania’s, Dr. David Skeel — True Paradox: How Christianity Makes Sense of Our Complex World — on Sunday, November 26, 2017. The final event will be a research fellow from the Carl F.H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Dr. Gavin Ortlund, on Sunday, April 29, 2018. Dr. Ortlund will teach on What Church History Can Teach Us About Science and Faith.
“I am honored and thankful for this opportunity for our church here in West Chester,” Johnson stated. “This award allows us to continue the mission of John Stott where the local church becomes once again a place where serious issues are contemplated and discussed – all under the revelation of Holy Scripture.”
For more information on guest speakers and Dr. Johnson’s sermon series, please see here.