25 March, 2006

Aubourn Avenue vs. the Emergent Church

Credenda Agenda has written a critique of Brian McLaren's A New Kind of Christian. They have a lot to say to us Reformed people. We need to listen to this movement and hold onto that which is good.

For all his flaws, though, let's face it—we have guys like McLaren leading a sizeable heap of Christians because we Reformed types consider the Great Commission something of a spectator sport. We consider intramural arguments among postmillenialists more important than feeding the poor in Africa. We haven't the slightest idea how to get our finely-tuned engine into a car, let alone out on the road. We take our talents, bury them, and call our riskless life "good stewardship." The Kingdom of God is much more than the baptistic evangelical altar call. It is much more than the simpering religious bricolage of Emergent. It is also much more than our own myopic infighting. We know for a fact that the Kingdom, the church, is a conquering, holy nation of kings and priests living in the world that God has promised to liberate and has liberated in Jesus. We know and assent to this—and without needing postmodernism to tell us so—but we won't feel it in our bones until we go out to the highways to bring in the poor and the lame and the maimed and the blind.

6 comments:

Ellie said...

AMEN!!!

Stephen said...

Well said, Nate!

Mark said...

That's why I love reading stuff from Moscow - they hold a Biblical standard that doesn't kowtow to denominational differences. So they're just as capable of critiquing the Reformed as they are of critiquing the Emergent church.

Dunno if you saw this, but a few months back Doug Wilson reviewed McClaren's "A Generous Orthodoxy". You'll have to do some digging, but you can find it at http://www.dougwils.com/index.asp?Action=ArchivesByTopic&TopicID=28

Good stuff, that.

Mark said...

OK, I was lazy. Here's a proper link.

Penumbra said...

To eschew eschatalogy or theology in general in favor of "feeding the poor in Africa" would be a great mistake. In fact, it is a myopia that often plagues the church. How many Africans who call themselves Christians are aware that communism is evil? How many have been instructed in what a godly government looks like? Zambia is trying but they have a long way to go. We need to bring them knowledge. Feeding them is not enough. Telling them they need to accept Christ into their lives as Saviour is not enough. They need to know what it means to accept Christ as Lord. They need to be clothed and fed with knowledge, too.

Christians in American scoff at theonomists. Why do we need to study that, they say? They say that's not important. I beg to differ. If you want to help Africans, you'd better have some idea of where the bible stands regarding the government. At least the theonomists are trying even if they may be missing the mark!

Finally, is it wrong to debate views on postmillenialism? Absolutely not! Is it wrong to pick sides in the arguments without struggling to understand them? Yes. Does eschatalogy effect governments? Consider these words: Israel, palestinians, terrorism, jihad, fundamentalism, pat robertson, axis of evil, george bush, zionism, arianism...
So, should we debate and know our eschatalogy??? Anything less is myopic. While experience can be a thorough teacher, education should be used where possible!

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Nate said...

Mark
I like a lot that CA does as well. I do not like the whole Aubourn ave stuff though. I think that when there are issues in SOTERIOLOGY that other huge issues follow.