• by  • May 27, 2014 • Uncategorized

    Response to Dr. Amos Yong’s paper on Asian American Theology
    Grace Hsiao, June 16, 2011, ISAAC Scholar lecture, San Jose, California

    PDF here

    This response was part of an event that entailed the reading of Dr Yong’s paper, and responses from Theologian Kiem Le and myself.

    At the time of the event, Yong’s paper was unpublished, but has since been published as “Asian American Historicity: The Problem and Promise of Evangelical Theology,” SANACS Journal [Society of Asian North American Christian Studies Journal] 4 (2012-2013): 29-48.

    The event drew people who were interested in Asian American Theology, who were thus familiar with Evangelical theology, history etc.  My references reflect this more academically and theologically inclined audience.

    In short, Yong’s argument that there is no Asian American Evangelical theology, because Evangelical theology does not allow for one.  Evangelical theology is a reaction to Liberal theology, and because it is such, it is largely about universal propositions, about things that would be common for all.  As a result, history, context, particularities, culture—have no relevance to an Evangelical theologian.  Evangelical theology does not allow for this.

    When I read this, I got very excited.  As someone who became Christian in college, I always found the Evangelical Christian world confusing.  Yong’s argument helped me understand 4 things:

    1) Why we Evangelicals do not seem in touch with reality in the world and within ourselves.

    2) Why we Evangelicals are not poised to know others, especially other Evangelical Christians who have not grown up in the Evangelical sub-culture.

    3) Why we Evangelicals have difficulty growing after we are saved.

    4) Why we Evangelicals sometimes think seminary is irrelevant to our ministries and personal lives.