Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Emerging Frustration

One of the things I don't like about the emerging scene is the way it celebritizes some and the minions follow their interests. The agenda of the mass of emergence seems to be played according to the desires of the celebrities.

What I mean is, we wonder what Rob Bell is reading and then we read that so that we can be like him.
When the whole point is to be us where we are!
Or, we get interested in quantum physics (Pagitt), or have a theology pub (many), or listen to rockabily music (Kimball) or wear hats (A. Jones) or understand Moltman in a single cursory reading (T. Jones).

I totally respect all sorts of the leaders of emergence - and some I think are nut-o's so I like them even more...but I think the emerging community betrays it's lack of emergence when it merely copies the vision and desires of celebrity emergers.

So, hear it here first: I will not be swayed from being the best James Carmichael possible. I will not grow my hair longer because of the last nooma. I will not wear a faux-hawk because of the Axis leader (and they were cool in for English soccer hooligans 10 years ago, which is when I wore one...silly Americans, try to keep up!), I will not say there are mulitiple ways to heaven and make Jesus Christ a mere prophet so that I am edgy like some in Seattle. I will not swear to try and pretend to be relevant, for that matter, I will not worship at the altar of relevance. I will not name drop. I will not. I will not. I will not.

But, I will go out for lunch today and develop future leaders. I will live missionally and holisticly. I will raise my kids with a knowledge of the Scripture and a relationship to the Triune God. I will push. I will change myself and change the church in accordance with the historical nature of our faith to meet the culture with the good news of Jesus. I will be a heretic if that is what they want to call it. I will see the kingdom of God and move in those waves of light. I will. I will. I will.


Yeshayah/Nacho said...

I would like to share some views with you in concern with New Age that is coming in the church and we as Christians are blinded.
??That Day shall not come unless there come a great falling away first.? (2 Thessalonians 2:3)
We know by these words that before Jesus returns, great deception will come to the church. Right now, we are totally unprepared for it. One of the crying alarms in my heart is the almost total lack of discernment in the church. We have come to a place where we are so conditioned to the slow infiltration of all things sensual and worldly, that we judge the rightness of a thing based on how we feel, how something looks, how big and how popular something is. Humans by nature are trend junkies. The church, through compromise, have become trend junkies. There is always the ?latest? thing to make your church a success, make your program work, etc. There is something to be said for the steady faithfulness of a tiny church. In Revelation I never read Jesus commending a church for their astonishing growth. He does commend them for faithfulness under fire.
I recently viewed a new DVD series designed for teens and college kids. It’s slick, MTV quality and ?cool.? It is going to be marketed - and accepted - hugely in youth groups. It’s called ?Nooma? series by Mars Hill Pastor Rob Bell. I watched one entitled ?Bullhorn? and it made me spiritually sick. The background for Bell’s message is a fat, bald, coke-bottle glasses middle-aged man with shirttail hanging out and passing out literature and using a bullhorn to do street evangelism.
Bell went on to make the preacher come across as a fool, and worse - he proclaims that this man is actually turning people AWAY from Christ, and that he thinks even Jesus thinks he’s an embarrassment. Bell peppers his short message with new-age words like ?diversity?, ?inclusiveness? etc. It was very slick, and yes, many of us have seen someone like that. But the real message was, underlying it all, that evangelism is uncool and unnecessary, that we need to reach people by caring and putting and arm around their shoulder, and listening. These ?bullhorn? types are a terrible offense, and Jesus thinks so too.
What a damnable lie.
Our problem is not that too many bullhorn preachers have taken to the streets. The real problem is that the overwhelming majority of Christian youth don’t share their faith AT ALL. They have NEVER evangelized, never been on the street and WILL not. This DVD, if it gains a wide audience, is a preemptive strike designed by Satan to GUT this generation of its mandate to evangelize! They already do not know how and do not want to. This DVD’s message is, it is WRONG to, it is UNCOOL to, and Jesus doesn’t like it either.
Jesus caused many people to turn away from following Him. But Jesus wasn’t trying to attract large crowds. He wanted disciples!
You can tell me that I?m wrong in attacking Rob Bell ministry “Nooma” like I’ve been told by friends and pastors but i will not hide the fact that I Love Jesus and the fact that Jesus shared his gospel in a threatening way too (exp. Jesus Speaking Rev 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works) If you still think that I am wrong then i’ll be the Bullhorn Guy and I will love God in a fearful way Amen.

James said...

Nice comment - and nice blogs. Unfortunately, whenever someone begins to talk to me and pulls out some Scripture right off, I laugh out loud because I think of the movie 'Saved' when the girl threw her Bible at the other girl and yelled, 'I AM FULL OF CHRIST'S LOVE!!'

I love the noomas. However, I don't think they are the gospel; that was part of the point of this post. The bullhorn one I agree with, but wonder about - it seems to be the only directly negative nooma.

I, like many others I know, have a problem with many of the methods used to promote Jesus, which seem antithetical to the message of Jesus. However, I have recently changed my method of dealing with this from open, public (blog) discussion to directly contacting the people who I have problems with. That is why I emailed Pat Robertson a few weeks ago (and am still waiting for a response).

In the end, thanks for being the bullhorn guy on my blog - please feel free to respond to my poll (I think the 'mini-heretic' option may be best for you).