Frank Viola has posted an interview I did for him in one of his blogs. Here’s what I say to the question What’s the big idea of this book?
David Fitch: The word “prodigal” means excessive, extravagant, and reckless. The word has most often referred to the disobedient actions of the prodigal son in Jesus’ parable. Yet pastor Tim Keller of NY City has taught us how “prodigal” also applies to the Father who is excessive in his love for us and indeed sends His own Son across all boundaries to meet us in the depths of our sin and humanity. “Prodigal,” in our book, plays on this dynamic. God the Father has sent His Son across all boundaries into the world to bring the world back to Himself. That is truly radical, excessive and of course, prodigal! And we are to follow him. God is working across all boundaries and that is where Christian must be present as instruments of His work.
The problem for the church has been “how do we live like this and participate in God’s work through Jesus?” That sounds good but how do we actually live like this? Prodigal Christianity explores this powerful social dynamic that is set loose for God’s salvation in the world whenever we gather as God’s people in the world. It explores how when we gather, as two or three, in the world to submit to Jesus Lordship, His authority and power is released. And here’s the thing, we cannot control His power, only submit to it and be the instruments of it. It is His Kingdom not ours.
We can only participate. This dynamic of God working in and through us when we submit to “Jesus as Lord” has been a huge discovery for my life and my leadership and now, through this book, we hope to help churches journey into the very center of Christ’s reign as manifested when his people become present in the world. Prodigal Christianity is an outline of the theological basics we believe Christians (and churches) need to understand to take this journey. It provides examples of how this approach to entering the world changes the way we engage the challenges our culture presents the church in the 21st century.
You can read the rest of the interview here. Thanks Frank. Enjoyed doing the interview.