Theological and biblical framework of the field of community organizing

by Dr.  Robert C. Linthicum

The primary contributors to theological and biblical reflection on community organizing are Bruggemann, Jacobsen and myself. Wink has also contributed in his biblical research on the principalities and powers as political, economic and religious entities in the Roman Empire.

My biblical/theological framework for the field of community organization is most thoroughly addressed in my books Transforming Power and Building A People of Power. Building A People of Power is designed as a textbook on organizing which I used in my live and video courses; Transforming Power is written at a lay level with less organizing methodology and requiring less theological sophistication.

My biblical reflection works from scripture in tracing throughout the Bible the biblical vision of “the world as it should be”, a biblical social analysis of “the world as it is”, an exploration of the life, ministry and teachings of Jesus on empowerment, a biblical theology of salvation built around the theme of empowerment, the nature and mission of the church, the organizing strategy of Nehemiah, avoided biblical strategies for bringing about change, Jesus on building relationships through individual and house meetings (the discipleship band), Paul’s theology and practice of public life, exploring how Jesus and Moses both used confrontation as an essential tactic of liberation of God’s people, Jesus and many others on the building of leaders, how Nehemiah used organizing to work successfully for the transformation of Judah, and the spirituality of organizing: birthing God’s shalom community.

(Taken from: Response by Dr. Robert Linthicum To Questions Posed by Stephanie Scott. The Campolo School for Social Change, Eastern University, Philadelphia, PA.)


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