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« The Feast of Corpus Christi: An Invitation to Unity | Main | The Image of Protestant Evangelical Worship, pt 6 »

May 30, 2005

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may i be cynical for a minute?

i have run across several younger pastors in recent weeks who are reading the "required" list:

blue like jazz
the last word...

and so on. but when you engage them on the ideas of the books, they don't have a clue. i eally believe they're not stupid - at least my humble self tells my prideful self that! ;)- but why do they have so much trouble seeing that these books are not just "cool" but question the very fundamentals of what they teach every sunday?

so what's going on? are my local guys just not with it or are our seminaries doing too good a job of preparing pastors to meet expectations?

that's my cynical take on the reading lists.

on the optimistic side, what we read has to affect us and change can happen drop by drop. which is fine, since i believe we are still a long way from a true emergent church in a postomodern world.

honest, i'm really not that grumpy usually.

John, you raise some interesting points. My hunch is that some emerging generation leaders may not recognize the theological implications of what they're reading because they do not have that much of a grasp on orthodox theology to begin with. On the other hand, I've certainly met emerging church leaders who have demonstrated a far greater knowledge of theology and it's outworking than many older pastors I know. One of the problems out there is a general confusion among some between orthodoxy and orthopraxy -- meaning, that their practice becomes equated with their doctrine. This is one of the reasons why healthy deconstruction is needed so much today.

Chris,

i agree there's a real hope that we'll see a true outgrowth of theology in the postmodern world. not defining their beliefs first by doctrine, men and women with a passion to follow Christ will allow the Holy Spirit to lead them in truth.

but between here and there, i worry that we're in for a dry spell as we define ourselves so much by positional (not mis-spelled) truth - as we've seen before letting doctrine lead us to faith.

and once again, i find myself being grumpy.

What will the life & ministry (not to mention the theology) of today's churches be like if Rick Warren is the new guru of Christendom? Yikes!

Mark busher: "What will the life & ministry (not to mention the theology) of today's churches be like if Rick Warren is the new guru of Christendom? Yikes!"

I myself have mused on this very issue in some of my entries over at Lunar Skeletons. Warrenism is like some rivers down in Southern California: it may look a mile wide, but it's only half an inch deep.

Therefore, like you, I am somewhat concerned, especially now that Warren's books are apparently this influential with pastors.

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