This is part of an ongoing series where I briefly interview a theologian, pastor, author, or Bible scholar that I highly respect, and ask them to tell us a bit about themselves, their most current teaching project, and the one most important truth (the hack) they wish every Christian could learn.
I call the series “Hack the Theologian.” This doesn’t mean I think these theologians are hacks. Far from it! It means that I am trying to find (and share with you) the one thing that makes them tick, the one insight that keeps them writing and teaching, the one truth they are most passionate about, the one idea that turned their life and theology upside down.
(Do you know an author I can highlight in this series? Have them contact me!)
So Let’s “Hack” Bruxy Cavey
Bruxy Cavey is the senior pastor at The Meeting House, a church for people who aren’t into church. The Meeting House is a multisite Anabaptist congregation in Ontario, Canada where thousands of people connect to God and each other through Sunday services, online interaction, and a widespread house church network. His newest book, (re)union, released earlier this year.
Truth be told, I only like Bruxy because of his hair. It remind me of some author author/blogger with long hair. (It’s a joke!)
Here are Bruxy’s answers to my questions:
1. Can you tell us who you are and what you do in 40 words or less? (I put the word limit so we can see what you focus on.)
I’m Jesus-loving Jesus lover, who really loves Jesus. Beyond that, I’m the teaching pastor at The Meeting House: A Church For People Who Aren’t Into Church.
2. Tell us something about yourself that few people know.
Even though I speak in front of thousands of people each week, I’m a highly skewed introvert and a mild agoraphobic. I’m basically afraid of people! When I was younger, the one super power I wished I had was invisibility. I would prefer never to be seen.
Over the years God has helped me balance this tendency to want to run away and hide with a growing, maturing love for people, which wins out on most days and I’m happy to engage and connect.
I just think it’s funny that God gave this timid INFP one simple gift – public teaching to thousands. Very funny God.
3. What is the best book you have read this past year? (It doesn’t have to be theological!)
I really enjoyed Brant Hansen’s Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better.
Ever since the 1950s, when a booklet called The Four Spiritual Laws was released, Christians have learned how to talk about the good news of Jesus in terms of four basic points – God loves us, we have sinned, Jesus is the solution, we accept him by faith.
This God-Sin-Jesus-Faith pattern has been repeated in various formats throughout the decades since, such as “The Bridge to Life,” “Steps To Peace With God,” and “The Roman Road.”
And while I celebrate the truth in this way of presenting the gospel, I’m also aware of some key aspects of the gospel that are missing, such as the nature and call to enter the Kingdom of God here and now, as well as the inherent challenge to religious systems embedded within the message.
In (re)union I want to help us press the reset button on how we present the gospel, through what I call simply The Gospel in Thirty Words: Jesus is God with us, come to SHOW US God’s love, SAVE US from sin, SET UP God’s kingdom, and SHUT DOWN religion, so we can SHARE IN God’s life. (You counted, didn’t you.) [Jeremy’s Note: Yes I did!]
Also, the “target audience” is different. There are countless books out there designed to help Christians learn how to talk to non-Christians about the gospel. My hope is that (re)union will be accessible to both Christians AND non-believers to read, inviting them all to learn and grow and discuss together.
5. Karl Barth was once asked to summarize his life’s work in one sentence. He answered, “Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” How would you summarize your life’s work? To put this question another way, if you could get people to understand just one idea, what would it be?
God loves me, this I know, for Jesus tells me so.
Bruxy’s book, (re)union has already released. I really enjoyed it, and you can get a copy of it on Amazon right now. While you’re there, pick up a copy of his other book as well, The End of Religion. It’s one of my favorites.