It’s been quite a while since I’ve been talking on “emerging church” and “emergent” concerns directly. However, I recall this link making some impact. The last line perhaps is why I’m off to the “Was Jesus Political?” Dialogue later.
“1. The emerging church stands for a renewal of thought and praxis
2. The emerging church stands for a viable post-Christendom future
3. The emerging church stands for a recovery of intellectual and moral integrity
4. The emerging church stands for a less confident epistemology
5. The emerging church stands for a recovery of biblical realism
6. The emerging church stands for a recovery of the narrative-historical context of scripture
7. The emerging church stands for a contextualized ‘gospel’
8. The emerging church stands for authentic community
9. The emerging church stands for a renewal of discipleship
10. The emerging church stands for a grassroots theology
11. The emerging church stands for a new type of ecumenism
12. The emerging church stands for a creational eschatology
13. The emerging church stands for renewal of the imagination
14. The emerging church stands for blessing
15. The emerging church stands for public and political relevance”
Good post for jargon busters … let me pick two for an appetizer:
“2. Postmodern: Is often unfairly reduced in definition to “relativism”. It is a worldview that has critiqued and deconstructed many of the defining narratives of the modern era = roughly the period of time from the Enlightenment to the middle of the 20th century. It sees truth as relational as opposed to objective. Truth is not out there separate from human experience and community. A postmodern understanding of the world operates with two hermeneutical practices: the hermeneutic of finitude, and the hermeneutic of suspicion.
6. Emergent: This word has no definition, but it does have a metaphor. Brian McLaren introduced the term several years ago in a conversation among ministers involved with what used to be known as “Leadership Network”. When foresters go into a forest to determine its health they do not climb up into the trees. They get on their hands and knees and scour the ground for ’emergent growth’. Emergent is web of individuals and worshiping communities that are sprouting up from the forest floor. A soil that has its blend of modern and postmodern nutrients. A soil that also has an ecumenical blend of nutrients. Emergent is an organic conversation about shifts in theology. Its an organic experiment with ancient and new church practices .”
I’ll be looking forward to this timely book after this review:
“The book comes just as some scholars in the U.S. may be tempted to sharpen their pens to join a westward expansion of an atonement war begun in England over the last few years. That conflict began as my friends Steve Chalke and Alan Mann found themselves in hot water for raising provocative questions about a popular theory of atonement in their book The Lost Message of Jesus. Some Evangelicals, largely ignoring the main point of the book — the good news of the kingdom of God — said Chalke and Mann no longer belonged in their tribe because for them, Evangelical means a) subscribing to that particular theory of atonement, and b) equating that theory with the gospel. For a thoughtful online response to this controversy, I’d recommend Bishop N. T. Wright’s recent article available.
Meanwhile, here in the U.S., a number of Evangelical authors have also been raising questions about atonement. Among them are Dallas Willard, whose The Divine Conspiracy critiques what he calls “the gospel of sin management,” Hans Boersma, whose Violence, Hospitality and the Cross exemplifies a hospitable Reformed tradition (and is highly regarded by McKnight), and Joel Green and Mark Baker, whose Recovering the Scandal of the Cross seeks to counter the popular (some might say dominant) reduction of atonement understanding to one theory. More recently, Mark Baker edited Proclaiming the Scandal of the Cross, to which I contributed and which shows how various metaphors and theories of atonement are being preached in churches today. Each of these books has stirred up enthusiastic support (and I am among the enthusiastic supporters) along with some strong criticism.
For Scot McKnight to step into this tense terrain may recall the old maxim about fools rushing into territory avoided by angels, but it’s not only fools who rush into conflict: peacemakers are also drawn there, and this is the spirit in which McKnight enters the fray. Like an ambassador arriving on a troubled shore hoping to avert violent conflict, McKnight comes not to fire salvos or drop bombs on behalf of one side or the other, but to invite all sides to the table seeking better understanding.”
I’ve only read one of John Caputo’s books in a couple of sittings. I appreciate the role of philosophy and value the interplay between theology and philosophy but strongly and intuitively am aware of its limitations.
Looks good and a healthy broadening of perspectives:
“Mustard Seed Associates has released the latest edition of its “Seed Sampler” e-newsletter, this time on the theme of the emerging church. Tom Sine shares an excerpt from his new book The New Conspirators: Creating the Future One Mustard Seed at a Time (February 2008, InterVarsity Press), in which he categorizes “a new generation of creative, risk-taking Jesus-followers” into four streams: eMerging, Missional, Mosaic (or multicultural), and Monastic.”
Good starting point to think about our own set of church values:
- 1. Holistic Unity
- 2. Ecclesiological Diversity
- 3. Re-centered, multi-sensory Worship
- 4. A Recovered Trinitarian Ethos
- 5. Culture-engaged, Missional Communities
- 6. Authenticity: A Community of Truth
- 7. Mystery
- RECAP: Values for an emergent church planting mode
- Tension Points (Andrew Jones)
- 19 Theses of Walter Brueggemann“