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Why I am not “Emergent”

Frank Pastore wrote an essay that explains this much better than I had previously considered, but the “emergent” church (not like a sudden and dire need/ emergency but springing forth like from a seed) is not my cup of tea.  Even though I sometimes drink Guayaki Organic Tea, I think that the emergent church by and large is missing the point.  I don’t agree on every one of Pastore’s points, but the gist of his essay speaks the truth.


Comment from Mike
Time: 24 July, 2007, 7:11 am

I’m not emergent, by any stretch, and I have differences with a number of things that most emergent voices say; it’s hard to nail down what “emergent” means, what with its post-modernism, which itself is defined primarily by what it is not. Nevertheless, whatever agreement I could have had with Pastore is nullified by his outlandish and unsubstantiated claim that Al Qaida *supports* the emergent church. That’s very inflammatory talk indeed. While some Islamists might share Pastore’s vision of what could happen to the American church and by extension America itself, I don’t see how that translates into any support of emergent/emerging Christianity. Were that the case, we would send in the FBI to places like Ecclesia because they’d be collaborating with the enemy. But in reality, they’re not doing anything like that. Pastore is spreading what we call in my industry FUD: Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. And he’s using the Al Qaida bogeyman (before we had them, we had the Communists, before that, the Nazis, etc) to scare people into hating their neighbor. I’m not saying that you’re advocating any of that, but it’s clear to me that Pastore is doing that.

Comment from the Travel-junkie
Time: 24 July, 2007, 9:08 am

As usual I agree with you, Mike, in so much as I am not all about holding up radical Islam as the bogeyman supporting emergent churches as though they were financially helping them spread the gospel of peace through more candlelit services and organized disorganization. Whether or not Pastore is clearly advocating that the emergent church is evil and exactly what Al Qaida would want is at least debatable, however. Just as not all Baptist churches preach the same doctrines to the letter, neither do all emergent churches preach that we can have peace in our time by being Christian hippies, wearing hemp clothes and patchoulli, and going forth sharing the message that God loves us and accepts us all, no matter what beliefs we have about Him. Some emergent churches preach the Gospel that you and I believe, while others do nothing of the sort. Our friend Joe is a good example of that. He would not agree with the pastors at Ecclessia on most things and yet would consider himself (I assume) as part of the emergent church, just as they do.
Anyway, it is food for thought.

Comment from M.
Time: 24 July, 2007, 12:35 pm

Since I rarely read the fine print, I agree that the gist of this essay is true. I am too lazy to elaborate, however. You know
how I feel and what I believe.
(I knew you were waiting for me to weigh in . . .)

Comment from Rob
Time: 25 July, 2007, 12:21 pm

Hyperbole, thy name is Pastore. As Mike mentioned above, emergent churches are (by definition) hard to categorize theologically. Moreover, the type of universalism that he seems to equate with emergents is much more in line with what I expect from the mainline denominations.

Throwing the Al-Qaeda boogeyman out there is just cheap. I’m sure that the frequent emergent focus on social justice and equality would be fully in line with the proposed world Caliphate, right?

Comment from Beth
Time: 30 July, 2007, 11:56 am

Old clients I used to know had shares in that.

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