John Newton’s Words Stab Deeply

While this could easily be said of Mr. Newton’s more famous words, the song “Amazing Grace”, I presently refer to a bit I recently heard via a Justin Taylor message titled A New Kind of Christianity? A Look at the Emerging Church Movement.

Mr. Taylor masterfully used the following Newton quote in the context of how to engage the emergent church movement,

As to your opponent, I wish that before you set pen to paper against him and during the whole time you’re preparing your answer, you may commend him by earnest prayer to the Lord’s teaching and blessing.

This practice will have a direct tendency to conciliate your heart to love and pity him. And such a disposition will have a good influence upon every page you write.

If he is a believer, in a little while you will meet in heaven. He will be nearer to you than the nearest friend you have upon the earth is to you now. Anticipate that period in your thoughts.

If he is an unconverted person, he is a more proper object of your compassion than your anger. Alas, he knows not what he does but you know who has made you differ.

Zacharias, Mohler, and Sproul on the Emergent Church

Interesting video…

I thought Ravi’s comments are “worth the millenium.” The following starts at around 4:55,

Sproul:When Christians make confessions of faith propositionally and say “here we stand this is what we believe”, the emergent church was a built-in allergy to that don’t you think Al [Mohler]?

Zacharias: Vance Havner who had a very sharp wit with his one liners…

Mohler: He wasn’t emerging from anything?

Zacharias: Nope. He made the comment years and years ago when he was around. He said “when the tide is low every shrimp has his own puddle.” This [Emergent Church?] is another one of these puddles.

And it makes me wonder. There is seriously… with these men and women who are the progenitors of it, were they bored with God? What brought this about? You know, what brought this methodology into a theology? When you write a book like “The Secret Message of Jesus”? [by Brian McLaren] What?!?! 2,000 years have gone by now suddenly he’s found the secret to it, we didn’t know it?

This is so bizarre, but you know the problem is that we got non-critical people listening to this stuff and they absorb it.

When you read Brian McLaren every chapter dies the death of a 1,000 qualifications… At the end of it you wonder what he really believes and maybe something on Monday something else on Tuesday. He’s an anti-doctrinaire doctrinaire doctrinizing individual always postulating doctrine while he’s anti-doctrine.

These are hard words but it is pitiful to watch something like this actually gain currency

(H/t: Reclaiming the Mind)