POC Blog

The random technotheolosophical blogging of Reid S. Monaghan

Emergent Church

Justin Taylor of Desiring God Ministries has a good blog entry on the Emerging Church... Two books coming out soon should be of interest:
  1. DA Carson's - Becomming Conversant with Emergent - Zondervan 2005 - coming in April 05.
  2. Scott Smith's - Truth and the New Kind of Christian: Accessing the Emerging Effects of Postmodernism in the Church ocming in September from Crossway

My take so far on the bazillion (is that a word?) blog entries, I have read, books, etc. is this:

The Good

  • Calling the church to “LIVE the gospel” - The gospel is not just believing things, but being transformed and changed so that we are, and we serve, and we share Christ with others.
  • Calling the church to give a rip about the poor because our hearts are way too cold and our actions at times non existent in loving the least of these.
  • Calling the church on its captivity to “modernist management techniques” etc. That we cannot manage everything so tightly, life is messy, ministry with people is messy, and managing it all to death can dishonor our God whom we serve.
  • A strong desire for depth of community - realizing the bigger is not always better/more successful/etc. {I would add that bigger does not have to mean bad either}

The Not So Good (formerly know as The Bad but "remimagined for our postmodern times")

  • Though the gospel is not just believing things, we must believe in HIM - and Jesus is not defined to be whatever we or "culture" believe him to be. He is defined by his own self revelation in Scripture, his own Word, his own propositions saying "I am...." . We sure hate it when others judge us and do not let us speak for ourselves. Life with God is by faith and trust in God's truth which saves us. We believe in God, the identity of his Son, his atoning work, his dire warnings, etc. Not just whatever I imagine Him to be.
  • Philosophy that undermines the very nature of the Faith 1) Denial of linguistic ability to transcend one's culture or language game (ala Wittgenstein) 2) Too heavy an emphasis on Reader Response Hermenuetics. Yes, we have bias' but if the Scirptures are a Word from outside - truly from God, they serve as the norm which can correct our bias' and misperceptions about reality 3) Following of subjective feelings devoid of a Biblical worldview by which to judge our feelings, perceptions, "spiritual leadings, etc" - very scary if we only listen to "the voice within"
  • Pluralism, Syncretism and the Denial of Doctrines which do not tickle the contemporary ear. This is nothing new in history. We do not like that Jesus claimed for himself to be the unique, prexistance Son of God, The unique Savior of humanity, the unique payment for sin and the Lord of Lords. That we must have faith in this Jesus (not he Jesus of our imagination or our inner voices) in order to be reconciled with God. We don't like thinking that "all the religions out there" are mistaken about God and Jesus - not mistaken about all things, but judged by Jesus himself if they deny his divinity. We do not like gehena (Hell), I don't think it is a fun-fun, joy-joy place either, but it is not love to be silent about a teaching Jesus reminded people about so much - If we do not turn to him, we perish.

The Ugly

  • Well that would be my crooked nose that I broke two times in college.