Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Concerns Regarding the Emerging Church Movement? Part 3

Relevance of Christ and His Church to the World

B.B. Warfield in the same critical review from my last post,
“No one will doubt that Christians of to-day must state their Christian belief in terms of modern thought. Every age has a language of its own and can speak no other. Mischief comes only when, instead of stating Christian belief in terms of modern thought, an effort is made, rather, to state modern thought in terms of Christian belief.” (Emphasis added)

Further he says,
“[These young men] are preoccupied with modern thought and appear to suppose that Christianity must be assimilated to it. They open their Introduction by telling us that “Christianity” as well as “its traditional theology” originated in past of outworn conditions…” (Emphasis added)

B.B. Warfield in a critical review of a book called “Foundations. A Statement of Christian Belief in Terms of Modern Thought.” The works of B.B. Warfield Volume X, pg. 322

This statment, "originated in the past of outworn conditions," sounds very much like what the Emergent Church says.

Traditional theology isn’t rooted only in Modernist or Victorian wineskins. It is rooted in the authoritative inerrant Bible! Absolute truth in the Word given to us in the canon of Scripture [The Bible] is authoritative! So if stating things clearly (which has occurred all through history in statements/confessions of faith…not just in Modernism) as to what we believe is only showing our acceptance of the authoritative Word of God.

Recently Brian McLaren [a leader in the Emergent Church] wondered:
“why the vision in Dan Brown’s book [The Da Vinci Code] is more interesting, attractive, and intriguing to these people than the standard vision of Jesus they hear about in church.”

To which Tim Challies [a Christian blogger] said, "That's because they hate the Jesus of the Bible, Brian!"

(HT: Justin Taylor)

I would have to completely agree with Tim Challies. Check out this quote from John Piper:
“The glory of Jesus Christ is that he is always out of sync with the world and therefore always relevant for the world. If he fit nicely, he would be of little use. The effort to remake the Jesus of the Bible so that he fits the spirit of one generation makes him feeble in another. Better to let him be what he is, because it is often the offensive side of Jesus that we need most.” (John Piper in "Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ, pg. 99)

I believe that the absolute truth of the Bible is definitely out of sync with the world. That’s why it’s so relevant. Why would we want to make what is “out of sync,” for the purpose of bringing glory to Christ, “in sync?” To do so would undermine the purposes of God. So in every age what is thought to be the old way of thinking is made into a caricature so that the new way of thinking can achieve its agenda. And in the case of the Emergent/Emerging Church they won’t really clearly make their theological agenda known.

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