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Evangelical Village asks the question, “Has the Emergent Church been beneficial in any way? How?”
I answer … Yes. They have forced me to wrestle with tons of theological questions. For example …
About culture … Is the American church out of touch with the postmodern culture and therefore failing to contextualize the gospel in a way that is faithful and relevant?
About sectarianism … Are theological conservatives too uptight about their theological differences amongst each other and especially with those outside their understanding of “conservative”?
About church … Do we do church the way we do church because it’s biblically commanded or because we are incredibly bias and legalistic in our preconceptions about the regulative principle?
About the genres of scripture … Are we reading the Bible more like a science book for theological information than like it’s supposed to be read? Is our approach to reading scripture with the purpose of systematizing its teachings a result of Western European rationalism rather than our commitment to follow its teaching? Are we reading the Bible in the way it was intended to be read, or are we forcing an alien grid upon the text and therefore misapplying it?
About what it means to be a Christian … Can a female pastor who believes in annihilationism or limited inerrancy or inclusivism still be a Christian because she still believes in the deity, redemptive death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus?
That’s not an exhaustive list, but it should demonstrate that the Emergent Church has forced the church to ask really, really important questions.
(HT: Evangelical Village)