Thinking Through Creation Guided Reading Group

Five fortnightly sessions: 10 Jan, 24 Jan, 7 Feb, 21 Feb and 7 Mar
1-2pm or 8-9pm, online (via Zoom)
Plus a free Bonus session with Chris Watkin: Thurs 10 Mar, 10-11am, online (via Zoom)

Reading Group Chair: Dan Strange
Book: Thinking Through Creation: Genesis 1 and 2 as Tools of Cultural Critique
Author: Chris Watkin

Cost: £50 for five sessions, plus a free bonus session with book author Chris Watkin.

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“…if Christians merely explain the Bible to the culture, then the culture will seek to fit the Bible within the framework of understanding and assumptions that it already possesses. Not only is this impossible, but it also absolutizes our culture in its present state, refusing it the chance to develop and be challenged, while at the same time butchering the Bible beyond all recognition, neutering its strangeness to our generation and shaving off what are currently perceived to be its sharp corners. If we do this, then we lose the gospel and fail to serve the culture.

If Christians are to speak with a voice worth listening to in public debate and intellectual life […then] we must bring to the table something more than a repackaged and warmed-over repetition of what our society already thinks and feels.

What our culture needs is not a Christ made in its own image, but the real Christ of the Bible who comes in grace and truth to challenge, transform, and fulfill the culture for its good and his glory.”

Watkin, C. (2017) Thinking Through Creation p.138-142

For Christians wanting to interpret the world through the word, Chris Watkin’s Thinking Through Creation has been a game-changer and praised by the likes of John Frame, Kevin Vanhoozer and Al Wolters, who says, ‘I regard this slim volume as a seminal work, and I predict it will become a classic of its kind’. In its one hundred and fifty pages, Watkin presents to us in Genesis 1 and 2, the foundations of what might be called a ‘biblical theory’: not simply thinking about the Bible but thinking through the Bible in terms of its patterns and moves which give us tools for our cultural engagement. As Watkin writes, ‘when we start thinking and acting through the Bible in this, we can provide genuinely fresh, distinctive, and constructive contributions to intellectual debate and social change.’ Thinking Through Creation is one of those books where the light-bulb moment keeps on happening as you find yourself saying ‘ah yes, I see that now’!

In this guided reading group over five sessions we will engage with Watkin’s thesis, learn to handle the diagnostic tools that Watkins gives us, and start to consider how we might use these tools in both our cultural consumption and our cultural creation – as individuals, as leaders, and as churches. Consider it essential for your ‘continuing discipleship development’ and join us!

Course dates and times

Five sessions, fortnightly on Mondays: 10 Jan, 24 Jan, 7 Feb, 21 Feb and 7 March at either 1-2pm or 8-9pm. Followed by a bonus free session where Chris Watkin will join to engage with the group (Thurs 10 Mar, 10-11am).

Is it for me?

This guided reading group will be valuable to any Christian wanting to think further about how to engage with our culture, but doesn’t assume any prior theological training or knowledge of the topic.

You will need to buy a copy of Thinking Through Creation and commit time to reading a section of it before each fortnightly discussion. Before each session you will read the assigned book chapter, along with the reflection questions at the end of the chapter. This reading will form the basis for the group discussion, chaired by Dan Strange. The book has five chapters so the course is structured so that the whole book is covered in the five discussion sessions, with chapter one being discussed in session one.

Cost

£50 for the five discussion sessions, plus the free bonus session.

Reading Group Chair: Dan Strange (Director, Crosslands Forum)
Book: Thinking Through Creation: Genesis 1 and 2 as Tools of Cultural Critique
Author: Chris Watkin
Summary and reviews of Thinking Through Creation

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