The Gospel for All of Life is a series of conversations on the influence of the gospel across our existence.
The Gospel Coalition India founding Council members discuss the need for gospel-centered content for the Indian Church, produced by Indian writers, addressing Indian issues and challenges.
The question on everybody’s mind is how is TGC Global going to be different from The Gospel Coalition India?
There’s already several chapters of The Gospel Coalition in the world.
Why is there a need for another Gospel Coalition chapter? Why India? What will be the similarities? What will be the differences? Does it need to be different? What do you guys think?
Yeah, I think the first thing that we’d want to say is that The Gospel Coalition global website has been around for over 15 years now. They’ve produced gospel-centered, biblically faithful content on a vast array of topics, almost every conceivable subject that has got some kind of resource there.
It’s been one of the most popular Christian websites in the world. With millions of people viewing the website. It’s been a blessing to people all around the globe. So we’re really thankful for the work that’s already been done, not only by the US website but by the chapters around the world.
But I think the need of the hour is Indian content for the Indian Church, produced by Indian writers, addressing Indian issues and challenges.
As Paul says in Colossians 1:6, the gospel is bearing fruit all over the world, and the gospel connects with every culture in a very unique way. And so the gospel is connecting, is going to continue connecting with Indian culture in a very unique way.
And so The Gospel Coalition in India is going to faithfully chronicle that. With that said, I think The Gospel Coalition in India is going to be a very faithful re-imagination of what The Gospel Coalition does globally, stay true to the unchangeable foundational documents the foundational philosophy on which The Gospel Coalition globally was founded, but faithfully reimagined that for the Indian context.
I think sometimes specifically when you think about the west from an Indian Christian perspective, we have to recognize the tension that sometimes it’s felt a little paternalistic. But what do you do with that tension?
There’s a sense in which you ignore it and you just kind of depend overly on the west for resources or you distance yourself completely and you just close the door to that relationship.
But I think the faithful way is where we recognise that as Indian Christians, there’s something about India that we understand that nobody else anywhere in the world will ever understand. And so we must participate in how to apply the gospel to India.
But at the same time, because we’re in India and have grown up in India and have lived in India for so long, we’re like fish in the water. And so there’s things that we can’t fully understand without somebody from the outside looking in. But that relationship, that conversation must feel like it’s equal. It’s a conversation between equals.
And I think it’s an important conversation where the west can learn from us and we can learn from the west, and not just the west, but all over the world. So if we do this conversation well, if we do it well, we can create a kind of global micro-community of healthy conversations over the gospel and culture where people are quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry, which would be tremendously countercultural everywhere in the world. And it would be a beautiful thing.
Historically, we’ve received much from our Western brothers and sisters in the world and the faith. But I also believe that India has the potential to give, and I think it’s time to give and participate in the conversation of faith worldwide. So I think that’s going to be a key thing as well.
I think the time has come for India to sit at the table, and the Church is becoming truly global. And so this is not just about India, but it’s about true of every culture.
And I think the global Church is going to be enriched as she learns. And this exchange and engagement with different cultures kind of keep happening. So from that perspective, India has received so much from the west, but I think in terms of gospel understanding.
But I think the time has come for India to come and sit at the table. And I think what Christians in India are experiencing, the journey of Christians in India with the gospel is going to be of relevance and of help to the global Church, just as the learnings from every other country is going to be so helpful for us as well.
And I think it’s important to recognise that the Church is, historically—I don’t think, an overstatement to say—the most culturally diverse family in the history of the world. We have people who belong to Christ from many nations and many tribes. One day we’ll have members from every nation and every tribe. We are prepared for this. We’re praying for this. God wants this community to be a community that represents and celebrates every culture and every tribe.
And I think it’s not just an issue of Gospel Coalition US and Gospel Coalition India. There are actually many other coalitions that God has raised. And it’s really a beautiful international community that’s being developed through The Gospel Coalition. And India, like we’ve been saying, is just adding our voice.
But there’s a multitude of voices that are coming in from all parts of the world and an increasing number of areas of the world that are contributing their voices. And I think God is really doing something beautiful, and I think it’s going to be very exciting for The Gospel Coalition India to lend our experience and our insights into the conversation.
I think the similarities are going to be in terms of being a faithful witness to the gospel, understanding the gospel, and having a passion for the gospel, just like all the chapters of Coalition and chapters across the world. But I think the uniqueness will be the voice in India so how we look at our cultures and our context and voices from within India. So I’m looking forward to that.