One of the goals of theological interpretation of Scripture is to assist the church in critical reflection upon its own practice as it seeks to understand and to live within the biblical story of God’s dealings with the world. Drawing upon Joel Green’s scholarly investigation of the nature of conversion in Luke-Acts, this article offers a critical reflection upon practices of exclusion in the church in New Zealand. I argue further, in accordance with Luke-Acts, that participation in the purposes of God, or being numbered among the children of Abraham, is not a matter of privileged descent, but consists in the redirection of one’s life in community with others towards the fulfilment of God’s eschatological purposes evident in Christ. Māori Christians, I suggest, have a good deal to teach the wider church in this regard.

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