Oh No, I’m Reading Emergents!!! EEEK!

          Many of you who read this blog regularly know that I am not very “religious”. The traditions and standards that the man made church have tried to impose on me all my life have done nothing but push me in the opposite direction, so I ran and in so doing ran to Jesus in a way I never could have before. I believe in a balanced conservative gospel where the depravity of man and the total grace and love of God are both embraced, and I will not budge on humanities utter need for salvation and Jesus.

         BUT… That does not mean I can not read and learn from people who have differing beliefs. The emergent church is liberal and universalizes orthodoxy that should not be altered, and I can not in good conscience fully embrace their “radical” viewpoint that I believe is rooted in a desire for glorified unaccountability.

          Two writers that have caught a lot of heat are Brian McLaren and Shane Claiborne. Both embody the emergent movement to a T… But they have written several books each that have gotten a lot of critical acclaim.

           I decided to read a few of their books and while I don’t agree with everything they say, I have found that they have a few really good things to say. For the discerning Christian these two books are definitely worth a read, and I encourage you to check them both out!






~ by Tim Kurek on April 9, 2008.

3 Responses to “Oh No, I’m Reading Emergents!!! EEEK!”

  1. Shane Caliborne would be Emerging rather than Emergent. The distinction is a careful one. He raises the bar on Christianity way higher than any other Christian teacher I have ever met.

    And nether Caliborne nor McLaren are universalist (though McLaren may be slowly heading there). You should be careful with such massive generalisations. I consider myself a member of the emerging conversation yet you would not say that I am liberal (though I have been called that some times, a conservative at other times, and a heritic every now and then).

    When it comes down to it the Emerging Conversation is between people who simply have a lot of difficult and unanswered questions about church and faith. We tend to deconstruct things too much. The Emergent Church (notice the ‘ent’) is a poorly named segment of the emerging church that is much closer to liberalism and ideological pacifism than I would like. But the Emerging Conversation as a whole is a powerful challenge to the mondern church.

  2. Thanks for commenting, however you are very wrong as to the classification of both writers I mentioned. They are emerg”ent” by their own admission. In both books they mention it.

    As for what you said, your definition of emerging and emergent is almost dead on, but the emergent is quickly turning into a heavy universalistic sect. Rob Bell, Tony Campolo, Shane Claiborne, and McLaren are all very much within the “ent” group now. And like I said, it is by their own admission.

    And please don’t take my blog as a burn on Emergents or Emergings. I was merely poking fun at the fundamentalist readers I have… Marcus, you know who you are!…. And promoting two good books!

    Thanks bro!


  3. I’d be interested in knowing where Shane Claiborne claims to be “emergent”, since my reaction to his being classified as such was “I don’t think so”. Shane seems to go in a much different direction, although he is popular amongst people who also freqwuent “emergent” conversations. I get the impression that Emergent is very similar to the “Lay Renewal” movement or “Relaitonal” theology of the 70’s and 80’s, ala Keith Miller, Robert Raines, and Bruce Larsen. In fact, one of Larson’s books was entitled “The Emerging Church”. Shane seems much more monastic. I don’t see a whole lot of renunciation going on in emergent folks (thgis is not a judgment, but a simple conmtrast in the amount of lifestyle circles in which “emergents” tend to run, and they don’t seem to be leaving the comfortable places for places “forgotten by empire”. They seem to be all over the places like Starbucks and coffeeshops drinking lattes (and I’m one of the Starbucks drinkers – although I usually get the basic mild basic coffee — , I actually want an iphone, etc.)

    I also don’t hear Emergents talking like the new monastics, and hear many of the Emergents criticize the New Monastics, or at least avoind talking about the “New Monastric subjects” (as in those of “Jesus for President”)

    Just my two cents

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