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Talking Points
Audio Recordings

For the past decade, Talking Points has been providing valuable resources to the Grand Rapids community and beyond. From topics like civic engagement, creation care and social justice, Talking Points has brought in well-known keynote speakers who can address each subject with clarity. Below you can access past Talking Points resources.

Justice + Unity | Part 1: Black/African American Experience and Perspectives (Spring 2018)

On April 26, 2018, Grand Rapids Theological Seminary launched a special Talking Points series and hosted the first of three conferences to explore the themes of racial justice and ethnic unity in Scripture. This first event centered on Black/African American perspectives, the second event centered on Hispanic/Latino(a) perspectives, and the third event centered the perspectives of women.

Our desire is to hear God’s Word with open hearts and to attend to the ways that brothers and sisters in Christ have been marginalized, even within the body of Christ. We have hope in Christ and His Spirit who is able to move us toward confession, repentance, healing and love. We invite pastors, leaders and individual Christians to join the conversation.

Session 1: Introduction With Dr. Joe Stowell and Darrell Yoder

Session 2: “Kingdom Agreements” With Pastor Denise Evans

Session 3: “Reframing the Discussion from Freedom to Hope” With Dr. Tim Gombis

Session 4: “Justice, Race and the Gospel” With Dr. Mika Edmondson

Session 5: “A City Within a City: The Black Freedom Struggle in Grand Rapids, Michigan” With Dr. Todd Robinson

Session 6: Pastoral Panel Discussion With Pastors David Beelen, Denise Evans, Christy Lipscomb, Marcus Little, James White and Artie Lindsay (moderator)

Session 7: “The Image of God and the Unity of His People: A Hopeful Vision in Dangerous Times” With Dr. Jonathan Greer

Session 8: “Double Burden and Double Blessing: The Unique Calling of Black Christian Women to the Prophetic Witness” With Dr. Christina Edmondson

Session 9: Speaker Panel Discussion With Drs. Christina Edmondson, Mika Edmondson, Tim Gombis, Jonathan Greer, Todd Robinson and Darrell Yoder (moderator)

Session 10: Closing Message—James 2:14-16 With Dr. Mika Edmondson

Justice + Unity | Part 2: Hispanic/Latino(a) Experience and Perspectives (Fall 2018)

Justice + Unity | Part 3: Women in the Kingdom (Spring 2019)

On April 16, 2019, Grand Rapids Theological Seminary concluded our special Talking Points series and hosted the third of three conferences exploring the themes of justice and unity in Scripture. Our first event centered on Black/African American perspectives, our second event centered on Hispanic/Latino(a) perspectives, and the third event centered the perspectives of women.

Conversations between women and men in the church often focus on theological positions about leadership and authority, and once conclusions are drawn, we tend to move on. However, there is more at stake than exegetical and theological positions. Those discussions are important, but we need to explore some larger questions about the practical day-to-day life of the church.

As we concluded our Justice + Unity series, we invited the people of God to reflect on the experience of women in the church—how they are flourishing and how they are marginalized—and to consider how the body of Christ can recognize their giftings and encourage them in their callings. The key question driving this event is adapted from Carolyn Custis James’ work in her book “Half the Church”: Is our vision for women robust enough to enlist and empower all women to bring all their gifts to the body of Christ? If not, at what cost?

“Introduction” With Dr. Joe Stowell, Darrell Yoder

“Kingdom Agreements” With Pastor Denise Evans

“The Blessed Alliance Mobilized” With Carolyn Custis James

“The Blessed Alliance and the Power of the Gospel” With Carolyn Custis James

“A Pastor’s Regrets: What We’ve Lost Doing Ministry In a Man’s World” With Pastor Marcus Little

“Women Learning and Leading in the New Testament and Today” With Dr. Lynn Cohick

Panel Discussion: “Empowering Women Vocationally” With Lynn Cohick, Elizabeth Conde Frazier, Christina Edmondson, Justin Holcomb, Jennifer Vanderground

“The Church and Women At Risk” With Dr. Justin Holcomb

Loving LGBT+ People With the Gospel (Fall 2017)

On Oct. 17, 2017, Grand Rapids Theological Seminary hosted a conference to discuss how pastors, church leaders, counselors and individual Christians can love LGBT+ people in a way that embodies Christ’s love, compassion and truth.

As followers of Christ, we are called to honor the dignity and worth of every human being made in God’s image. How can churches with a historical, global and Christian view of sexuality and marriage be a place where LGBT+ people can find love, care and community? Our speakers made the case that churches do not need to change their theological position to love people well, and they gave practical insight on how to do so.

Session 1: “People To Be Loved” With Dr. Preston Sprinkle

Session 2: “The Gospel is Good News for Everyone Every Day” With Laurie Krieg

Session 3: “Understanding the LGBT+ Conversation” With Dr. Preston Sprinkle and Laurie Krieg

Session 4: “The Idolatry of Sex” With Matt Krieg, LLPC

Session 5: “Practical Implications and Q&A” With panelists Dr. Preston Sprinkle, Laurie and Matt Krieg, Pastor Marvin Williams and Dr. Gerald Longjohn (moderator)

Bridging Worlds (Spring 2017)

Everyday Works (2015-17)

In September 2017, Grand Rapids Theological Seminary completed a two-year project called “Everyday Works” and released a new video-based curriculum for groups and individuals. This four-part curriculum explores the question: What is the role of everyday work in discipleship and mission for Christ, and how does a biblical vision of work impact our approach to poverty?

The study engages a range of topics including Scripture, theology, business, economics, community development and more. Check out the trailer below to get a quick glimpse of the study. For more information, go to the Everyday Works web page. The curriculum is available in both streaming video and DVD formats.

Start the Everyday Works Curriculum

Thy Kingdom Come and New Creation Theology (2015)

During Thy Kingdom Come in 2015, pastors and ministry leaders explored new creation theology in Scripture and in the history of the church, considering the forthcoming transformation of creation to come with the arrival of the new heaven and new earth.

Session 1: “Why is ‘New Creation’ Important for the Church?” With Michael Wittmer, Ph.D.

Session 2: “New Creation Proclaimed: A Biblical Vision of Shalom” With Cornelius Plantinga, Ph.D.

Session 3: An Interview with Keith Getty With Keith Getty and Martin Spence, Ph.D.

Session 4: “New Creation in the New Testament” With Douglas Moo, Ph.D.

Session 5A: “Back to the Future” With John Duff, Ph.D.

Session 5B: “Whatever Happened to New Creation?” With Martin Spence, Ph.D.

Session 5C: Panel Discussion Moderated by Michael Wittmer, Ph.D.

*Due to technical difficulties, the first 10 minutes of Dr. Wittmer’s talk for Session 1 was lost. Our apologies.

Recognizing and Recovering from Addictions (2014)

Recognizing that the human phenomenon of addictions is complex since it is difficult to separate the mind, body and spirit within the human condition, these resources address the reality of addictions and the hope associated with the recovery process.

“Addiction Intervention: Discovering the Best Route for Total Recovery” With Dr. Tina Parkman

“Addiction Neuropathology: Understanding the Terrain” With Dr. William Struthers

“Addiction Treatment: Navigating Substance Abuse Counseling Groups” With Dr. Tina Parkman

Creation in Scripture (2013)

Christian Civic Engagement (2012)

Grand Rapids Theological Seminary’s 2012 Talking Points conference generated reflection on how we might restore civility in America as a model for restoring and fostering civil discourse around the world.

Listen to leading scholars discuss how Christian civic engagement has taken shape in America and imagine how you might take up these rights and responsibilities as new opportunities emerge.

“From Diatribe to Dialogue: Honoring God in Politics” With Dr. Amy Black

“The Body of Christ: The Political Identity & Mission of the Church” With Dr. Timothy Gombis

“A Christian Basis for American Pluralism” With Dr. George Marsden

Text and Culture (2011)

As the Bible is an ancient text written to an ancient culture and a relevant word from God himself for today, consider the challenges of understanding the meaning of the biblical text in its original context and speaking the relevance of the Bible to our contemporary culture.

“Biblical Text in Ancient Culture” With Dr. Daniel Watson

“Biblical Text in Contemporary Culture” With Dr. Douglas Moo

“Biblical Text & Cultural Relevance” With Dr. Scot McKnight

Darrell Yoder


MON - FRI: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
SAT & SUN: Closed

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