Emerging Confusion

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Revmitchell, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    Jesus is the truth whether we experience him or not.



    The arguments of some emerging church leaders, I fear, draw us perilously close to the trap set by postmodern deconstructionist Stanley Fish. Defending himself after his sympathetic statements about the 9/11 terrorists boomeranged, Fish claimed that postmodernists don't really deny the existence of truth. He said there is simply no "independent standard of objectivity." So truth can't be proved to others; therefore, it can't be known—a verbal sleight of hand.

    For evangelicalism (let alone emerging churches) to buy into that would undermine the very foundation of our faith. Theologian Donald A. Carson puts his finger precisely on the epistemological problem: Of course, truth is relational, Carson writes. But before it can be relational, it has to be understood as objective. Truth is truth. It is, in short, ultimate reality. Fortunately, Jim came to see this.

    More Here
     
  2. Baptist Believer

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    Thank you for posting this.

    I haven't had an opportunity to read the article yet, that will probably happen very late tonight because of my excessive workload, but I do agree that as far as Western culture is concerned, there is no universally-agreed upon standard of truth, or even an epistemological construct for most people to use for guidance in their search for truth.

    It's a failure of our institutions of higher learning, popular culture, religious institutions of all brands of theology (I've been in a number of fundamental and conservative churches that are as clueless as more liberal congregations), and seminaries.

    In fact, most people today don't seem to understand that we need to even look for truth, much less find it.

    Yet, the ultimate realities (truth) of the universe remain whether or not we care to discover them.
     
  3. Baptist Believer

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    Well I finally had a chance to read the article and I was very disappointed. I didn't realize it was one of those mini commentaries written by Chuck Colson's writing partner.

    Not much substance there at all.
     
  4. Marcia

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    You might like these:
    Truth Decay: Defending Christianity Against the Challenges of Postmodernism
    by Douglas R. Groothuis





    The Death of Truth: What's Wrong With Multiculturalism, the Rejection of Reason and the New Postmodern Diversity
    by
    [FONT=arial,helvetica,sans-serif][SIZE=-1]Dennis McCallum[/SIZE][/FONT]
     
  5. Thinkingstuff

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    I'm curious. Last sunday during our worship service things got turned around a little bit. There were candles lit where the pulpit usually is. The lights were dimmed and the music ministry was playing softly in the back ground. My pastor said that instead of doing things the usual way this sunday the church would be in communal prayer. We sang a few praise and worship songs and then there was a time for prayer. We sang some more then it was left up to the congregation to pray openly as they felt lead. Then there was more singing and directed prayer. Now is this what people are calling emergent?
     
  6. EdSutton

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    I would not have a clue as to whether this is what is being called "emergent" by some folks, but I would have one question.

    Would you consider this to be anti-Biblical, somehow? Exactly what are you referring to with the statement that
    I seem to recall some mentions of some extended prayer sessions in Scripture.
    There are many more, but these are just four which come to mind readily. Granted, as well, that this does not have to be (nor even necessarily should it be) the norm for a "worship service" by any stretch. But that alone does not make it necessarily un-Biblical, either, at least IMO.

    Ed
     
  7. FlyForFun

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    The candles and mood lighting is a bit creepy. I don't think we need artificial mood enhancers to pray or do anything else.

    I also think preaching is the heart of any service, and any service without preaching misses one more opportunity to expound the Word of God.
     
  8. Revmitchell

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    Moving on past inane post # 3 the crux of the op is about the perceived or at least claimed inability of anyone by the Emerging Church to not be able to know truth because there is no objective standard which they believe is proved by the difficulty of proving truth to others.

    Of course when in a service the word of God is set aside for an experience, as if praying was any more of an experience than preaching, then the op is played out. It is easy to point out errors in the church but in most cases such as with the Emerging Church the complaint is nothing more than an excuse to do what they wanted already regardless of any error in the church. In other words they are not actually trying to resolve any error in the church or worship but it becomes a spring board or excuse to do what ever they want. Quite dishonest.
     
    #8 Revmitchell, Sep 8, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 8, 2009
  9. Thinkingstuff

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    You must understand that I've never heard of the emergent church or contemplative prayer movement until I came to this site. Now my church does something that is not the norm and so I wonder if this falls into this catagory of what people are talking about. I personally saw nothing wrong with what happened. I'm just trying to understand. Usually we have, in this order, intro songs of worship, welcome preamble (with a note to new comers to fill out info on a tear off part of the bulletin, couple more songs of praise, insert special performance or testimony, preaching (usually using powerpoint), invitation to accept the lord or use the front as a prayer area while the congregation sings, if anyone accepts the lord or ask for baptism its made public, concluding song and benediction. This format was entirely new and unfamiliars. So I was curious.
     
  10. Johnv

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    That's a matter of subjectivity, and not a scriptural absolute. Each church should be allowed to decide for themselves things like lighting, candles, sound, etc.
    There's certainly level of subjectivity there. I agree that preaching should be the norm, but it's not unusual to have just prayer services. For example, my former church had a prayer service on Good Friday, where there's no preaching per se. Instead, it was mostly prayer (corporate and individual), communion, singing of hymns, and a lot of personal reflection. Does that mean a good Friday service is less of a service than a Sunday service? Of course not.
     
  11. Revmitchell

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    As we can see it is not difficult to reason preaching out of the service.
     
  12. Johnv

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    As we can see it is not difficult to reason one's own expectations of a service into what should be mandated in everyone else's service.
     
  13. Revmitchell

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    Yea let's not follow scripture and mandate the preaching of the word of God. That would just be to much. In fact let's just agree that nothing is mandated and we can all show up and just play bingo and eat cake.
     
  14. FlyForFun

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    Not really. A Protestant church by definition places the Word of God as the sole source of faith and practice. Paul commanded Timothy to Preach the Word, and Paul himself reasoned and expounded the Scriptures everywhere he went.

    Some Protestant churches also have "sacraments" as other means of grace, but central to every Protestant denomination should be the Word -- it is God's revealed, inspired, unchanging, authorittative Word, and everything we do or don't do is derived from or draws its authority from the Word.

    It's a missed opportunity to have any "service" without the Word. In the Good friday Service, wouldn't you at least read the Crucifixion account from the Scriptures??
     
  15. Revmitchell

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    And is foundational to any conservative theology and practice.
     
  16. Johnv

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    That's different that mandating formal preachign at a serice to be considered a service.

    I agree that, if preaching is absent from worship as a norm, then that's grounds for concern. That's different that mandating preaching at every service for it to be considered a service. There are obviously exceptions, such as at a Good Friday prayer service.
    I wound consider recaling the account of the crucifixion as a requisite at a Good Friday service. But your comment wasn't about recalling scripture. It was about preaching.
    There's nothing in scripture that says "a worship service isn't a service unless it includes preaching".
     
    #16 Johnv, Sep 8, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 8, 2009
  17. Thinkingstuff

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    I like having and eating cake! However, as baptist, indepent chuches autonomous, by definition there is nothing mandated apart from how that particular body sees being consistent with scripture.
     
  18. Revmitchell

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    You can call anything a service. The word service can be applied in all sorts of lose ways. Based on your logic everything can be excluded and we can all pay bingo instead.
     
  19. Thinkingstuff

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    I'm curious. Is fellowship (usually around food after all I'm southern baptist) on Sunday part of the worship service? I've always disected Sunday into 3 aspects. 1) sunday school 2) worship and praise 3) preaching of the word. I never knew why 2 and 3 were joined and titled as worship service. Praise seems to fall into worship. Hearing of word preached seems to me to be a different aspect. I mean did Jesus call the teaching on the mount a "Worship Service" or was it instructional?
     
  20. FlyForFun

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    Hang on... "recaling the account of the crucifixion..." means just about anything. Some guy in a sweater could "recall" some scene from The Passion and that would count?

    There is no "formal preaching." There is preaching and there is teaching. The purpose of preaching is to exhort -- to make you want to be, act, do differently based on the exposition of the Word. That can be a 3 or 50 minute event, depending on the circumstances.

    Well, the word "service" isn't used, either. The point is this -- God's people have gathered togther for some purpose. What is the best use of that time?

    Anything that isn't based on, predicated on, drawn from, or quotes from the Word is man made and is therefore suspect.
     

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