Emergent Latest …

Review Written by Paul Harrison
The last two reviews in this amazon page really brings a further twist to this story … (via Dashhouse)
“What I can say about McLaren and what he taught of the past few days is that he believes in the authrotiy of Scriptures and that they are true. Our interpretations, however, may not always be. A woman asked, “How is someone saved or born again?” McLaren answered, “Through grace, by faith, plus nothing.” He gave a clear presentation of the trinity, a clear presentation of the deity and lordship of Jesus and the importance of being His disciple as opposed to being just a “convert.”

He spoke cleary against relativism and defended the concept of truth being known, and I can honestly say I didn’t get one red flag from anything he taught in those six hours. His position on homosexuality was that it is not accepted as a biblically valid lifestyle, but that we are still to love and embrace them in community with us. His position on “belonging before believing” was clearly that we are inviting people to follow Christ and know Him by doing what he says. There is a distinct difference between those who are saved and those who are not yet, but the seekers are invited to walk in the way of Christ with us to see that He is Truth. They can then receive Him and make Him Lord. He by no means taught that people are saved by following Jesus as a guru, but must make a confession to receive Him. “

Reviews Written by B. Mclaren
A statement like this,
I didn’t want Dr. Carson to be misrepresented by the other review on this page.”
has made me wonder whether others have offered Brian the same grace … “straw men” are easier to get upset with … “real men” now that’s a different matter. “Straw men” don’t post reviews on other people’s reviews. Fascinating development 🙂

D.A. Carson and the Australians
I found it helpful to see how the “dialogue” in the comments progressed (my contributions were minimal)… there’s REALLY a lot of dynamism in this conversation.

The Emerging Church, Part One
The Emerging Church, Part Two
Although this is more “focused” on the USA context, it’s a good and useful intro to the subject matter, what are the issues raised, the concerns that have emerged, the criticisms, and the hints of the way forward … The interview transcripts are really the gems in these two pieces.

I hope to “enter into conversation” with some of the content the next few days … I’m not much into offering “critique” (though there’s a place for that), I found that I enjoy engaging in “conversation” what energizes me more 🙂

Responses to Recent Criticisms
the link starts with saying, “Dr. D. A. Carson has written a critical review of emergent, and of my work in particular. Dr. Al Mohler and others have praised and quoted Carson’s book in reviews and articles of their own. Unfortunately, in a number of ways their reviews misrepresent and misjudge my writings, thinking, and beliefs – and those of my friends.” How do we respond when another person considers themselves being misrepresented and misjudged? This does not mean there can be no disagreement but how can we better “represent another” even if we disagree? In more than 40 email exchanges with a friend on a number of important issues of faith, theology and ministry in the Malaysian context … I’m learning how this is ACTUALLY possible …

Rick’s plan to study the “emerging church”
wow! there’s someone actually having a Sabbathical to do this? Richard Laribee has a blog that describes his thoughts as he visits “emerging churches” (I was really delighted to stumble on to his blog and thoughts).The following comments struck me … if I replace the words “postmodern world” with “the context we live in today” or “21st century Malaysia” it’s still applicable. This is basic “missionary” thinking.
” I think the question at hand is not about “postmodern Christianity.” Christianity should not be considered ancient, medieval, modern, or postmodern. God became human and spoke with a Galilean accent, ate Galilean cooking, sang Galilean songs, danced Galilean dances, and laughed at Galilean jokes. The incarnation was within a particular historical and cultural context. But never have I thought that to “become like Christ” was to become Galilean. So I think it is with the Church and culture. The medieval Church would live and serve within a medieval world, clothed in medieval clothing and speaking with a medieval accent. Particularization requires contextualization. But to lose its medievalness when it modernized was not intrinsically a loss of anything eternal or essential. Always we wrestle with what is essential and what is coincidental. Always we will live and move within a culture, but it is in God that we live and move and have our being. It is not readily apparent which is which. So the question is not about how Christianity will become postmodern or resist postmodernism, but rather about how Christianity will best flourish and minister within the postmodern world.”

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