I love what James K. A. Smith writes here:
“I will argue that the postmodern church could do nothing better than be ancient, that the most powerful way to reach a postmodern world is by recovering tradition, and that the most effective means of discipleship is found in liturgy.” (Who’s Afraid of Postmodernism?)
According to Smith, postmodernism calls the church to embrace the historic and ancient faith of our fathers. I see several things that would be a “recovering of tradition” for us to consider:
- The public reading of Scripture.
- Along with the singing of modern songs, hymns, and spiritual songs, the church should make use of historic songs, hymns, and spiritual songs. This includes both the ancient songs of God’s people, such as the Psalms, or of songs written during the Patristics through the Reformation.
- Public prayer.
- A more central role of the Eucharist in our worship liturgy (w/ emphasis on the Reformed Spiritual Presence view!).
- Prayer for healing, per James 5:14-15.
What would you add to this list of “ancient practices”?
Luke is a pastor-theologian living in northern California, serving as a co-lead pastor with his life, Dawn, at the Red Bluff Vineyard. Father of five amazing kids, when Luke isn’t hanging with his family, reading or writing theology, he moonlights as a fly fishing guide for Confluence Outfitters. He blogs regularly at LukeGeraty.com and regularly contributes to his YouTube channel.