"Urban Paradise" at CTLibrary.com
In the popular imagination, the city often represents society's vices: violence, crime, sexual deviance, drugs. With the heightened visibility of suffering through homelessness, poverty, and racial discrimination, we see the more extreme effects of living in a sinful world. And though certainly not exclusive to the city, these realities are, like everything else in an urban environment, more concentrated. ...
To urban church leaders, led by nationally recognized figures like Ray Bakke in Chicago and Tim Keller in New York City, cities are more than just a present-day Sodom and Gomorrah, quietly awaiting their downfall, or crying out for salvation from the redeemed rural world. Instead, they're concentrated centers of transformation, communities with the opportunity to demonstrate God's grace. They're opportunities for individuals from diverse backgrounds to live, work, and play in near proximity, and in so doing, to participate in the authentic work of the gospel. Cities allow close-knit networks of churches to provide vital resources, for Christians to share the news of God's desire to break down barriers to justice, responsibility, and brotherly love.
Also see my B&C online article: Why There Will Be Sidewalks in Heaven
• Related Chapter: 5