Posted on13 January 2017
From the Dean: Growth in Wisdom
The world is a complex place. It always has been. Only the nature of the complexity changes with time. At this moment in history the challenges presented by the structures and problems we humans have created can seem intractable. Ethical and moral questions magnify the intensity of such issues as global warming, biotechnologies, financial disorder, political oppression, and freedom. Yet it is precisely this challenged world that God loves, and he calls us to participate in his Mission.
The Australian College of Theology has been serving that Mission for over 125 years. In that time, we have frequently been called to respond to changing needs and opportunities. We continue to seek the ways that we can best advance our vision that Christians are equipped to faithfully serve God’s church and God’s world.
Key to this is enabling growth in wisdom.
Wisdom is enjoying something of a revival in academic debate. Many, however, define wisdom merely as that quality which enables a good life. This grasp part of the biblical view but not its centre. Wisdom is about “loving God for God’s sake”. It is bestowed – gifted, not achieved – in encounter with the living God. In the New Testament, wisdom finds its focus in Christ. The “good life” is the result, rather than the goal. “By God’s act you are in Christ Jesus: God has made him our wisdom, and in him we have our righteousness, our holiness, our liberation” (1 Cor 1:30).
ACT welcomes students who seek to grow in wisdom. But we do so acknowledging that learning, teaching and research are not themselves the goal. We will continue to welcome and embrace the complexities of faith and life in this world, but we can only do this because, in our courses, our publications, our debates and our classrooms, we open ourselves to the astounding promise of divine encounter. There lies true wisdom.