Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Reaching out to this generation.

Reaching out to this generation.

As I become more and more involved in this emerging church generation, I can’t help but think of those who oppose. Mostly I think if revolves around the basic understanding we of EC are not pushing “postmodernism” but attempting to reach this generation who are lost in the postmodern age. In that we must make the Christian faith relevant just as we did in the modern age. People do not seem to realize that modernity has just as bad perspectives as post modernity, yet within the two ages, we have “tools” in which we use. To say that the tool of modernity, (reasoning and scientific methods) are better than tools of this generation is sadly rather ignorant and arrogant. Ignorant as that if one elevates the “tools” as foundations of the Faith we add to and with that diminish Gospel and it’s power as it now is based on human reason and understanding over the biblical view in which we should view our world. Arrogant as it asserts man as able to save himself and by himself become good enough to please God on our own merits.

Post modernity if it has a purpose at all is to remind those in Modernity that this is a broken and fallen world. All things are corrupt, which includes mans reasoning. In fact post modernity affirms the concept of original sin…. Unfortunately also denies that much can be done about it and can lead one to relativism and the denial of truth being absolute. As far as the post modern church, we find it surprising that someone claims we deny… we may question, and re-evaluate as to the idea of “absolutes” as defined by modernity. In that an absolute in modernity is something that can be verified by the human senses… it may be extended with the use of “tools” such as a microscope, yet if it can be seen, smelled, felt, and confirmed, then it can be considered to be absolute. This then denies the teaching of the scripture of God being Spirit… or that faith believing things that are not as if they are and seeing the as they will be. We cannot verify that God exists in modernity. With that it was not until men like C.S. Lewis and Francis Schaeffer (one of the greatest modern theologians) attempted and rather successfully that Christianity and modernity were compatible. Both these men have a found impact on the Emerging church still today. In fact Francis Schaeffer had a profound impact on how we are to be relevant in each generation. He taught that we must be relevant to our generation. Here is an article in how he has been an influence on the emerging church written by David Hopkins.

It was not until recently some scientists have stood up to show that science and Christianity are also compatible. Yet, now we stand in the post modern age… asking much the same base questions of, “How does Christianity fit in the postmodern age… and how are we to make Christianity relevant to this generation… and that is basically what we call being missional”.

Again, as I have said, I find it rather sad that some attack the idea of wanting to reach this generation with the Gospel… to show that faith in Jesus is relevant and just as real now as ever. We need to show this generation the Risen Christ.

Problems exist in every generation… in every new movement of God, in every denomination. Instead of attacking and judging our brothers and sisters we must stand united in the Call to “Go and make disciples”. To not only will leave this generation damned to hell.

I am often accused of supporting “heretics” like Brian McLaren… I have tried to point out that if you read his other books beside “he New Kind of” trilogy and Generous Orthodoxy (GO) you will find he is still very much evangelical in his views. In fact I see that some just do not understand what Brian is doing in the books that most are highly critical of. Scot McKnight has a great post on that topic and I think he addresses the issue very well. I agree that most do not catch the nuance of what Brian is doing. Yet, as Scot points out, Brian has cause a generation of people who have one back to their bibles to really look at what, and why we believe many of the things we do. I have in that been able to drop some of the “added things” of the Gospel message… and even confirm more some things I have always believed.

We need to seek God and not be judgmental… The scripture teaches that we are not to judge before that appointed time and with that The Judge will come and judges justly. We are incapable to doing that… again that is not opinion, but the teaching of scripture.

We need to lean into Jesus even more in this age… we need to pray more now than ever. We need to realize that if we add modernity, or post modernity to Jesus it is saying we do not think Jesus finished the job. We need to seek God and be discerning… without giving condemnation… to preach reconciliation and Unity.

Blessings
iggy


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2 comments:

Missional Jerry said...

excellent post

Anonymous said...

just so you'll know, you can get a weekly podcast from brian mclaren on wiredparish.com