Word and World: what’s in the name?

John Stott, pastor, teacher, and friend to many in IFES, recommends “double listening, listening to the word of God and listening to the voices of the modern world, its cries of anger, pain, and despair.” Inspired by this, Word & World has served as the title for sessions at IFES World Assembly since 2003.

The gospel attributed to another John places Word and World at its heart. This gospel draws on an Old Testament portrayal of God as one who “words”, who gives words to Israel, of the word as shining light and as sent to heal. In John, the Word was in the beginning, with God, and was God; this Word became flesh, the stuff of this world. Jesus Christ is this Word, and he speaks a word which when heard and believed gives never-ending life. In John, the World is what it is only through this Word. The World came into being through the Word, and the World is saved through the Word. The Father sent the Word into the World so that Jesus could tell the World the truth: that it lacked righteousness and justice and that it deserved judgment. The Father sent the Word into the World as an act of love, saving the World and bringing it health and wholeness. The Word’s gift to the World is life in all its fullness.

To listen to both Word and World, then, is to see the World as coming into being through the Word, as crying out in despair and alienation, and as made wholly alive through the Word. This listening is what Word & World seeks to enable.

Word & World builds on the foundations of earlier publications like the IFES Journal and the IFES Review. We aim to publish two to three issues each year, drawing in voices from around the world to address a contemporary issue. Word & World seeks to enable those involved in student ministry to be nourished by the gospel and attentive to the world that students inhabit.

Editor: Robert W Heimburger

Contact: wordandworld@ifesworld.org


Word & World is published by IFES: a movement of students sharing and living out the good news of Jesus Christ. Locally. Nationally. Globally.

Editorial Team

  • Robert W Heimburger, Editor
  • Cathy Ross, Consulting Editor
  • Tim Adams, IFES Associate General Secretary
  • Daniel Bourdanné, IFES General Secretary

IFES Theological Advisory Group

  • Robert W Heimburger, Chair
  • Femi B Adeleye
  • Charlie Hadjiev
  • Riad Kassis
  • Anne-Marie Kool
  • Las G Newman
  • Padipat Ong
  • Vinoth Ramachandra
  • Cathy Ross
  • Daniel Salinas
  • Chris Wright

Contact: wordandworld@ifesworld.org

Join the conversation at fb.com/ifesjournal

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