April 18, 2005

We now turn to chapter 5 of DA Carson’s book on the Emerging church. Patient listening is required, and that means patient sorting out of his argument and points, if we are to hear what is being said. I make no apologize for trotting out his case for the simple reason that we have to know what he is saying before any kind of reasonable response can be put forth.When I am done sorting out his case at the end… Read more

April 17, 2005

In this fourth part of discussing DA Carson’s new book on the Emergent movement, I will consider a chapter on “Personal Reflections on PM’s contribution and challenges” (PM=Postmodernism).He begins with Premodern epistemology (reducing the postmodernity to an epistemology, which has its own problems, especially when it comes to explaining the Emergent Movement as a part of that PM). Essentially, God is the Knower and all human knowing is coming to terms with God’s All-Knowingness and Knowledge. He adds a few… Read more

April 16, 2005

In this third installment of DA Carson’s important new book, Becoming Conversant with the Emerging Church, we will briefly summarize and ask questions of his third chapter, a chapter on how well (or how well not) the Emergent leaders understand contemporary culture. Let me emphasize again that DA Carson opens with comments on the diversity of the Emergent movement, and so any comments that “this doesn’t apply to us” is not fair to him. He speaks to four weaknesses in… Read more

April 16, 2005

I didn’t think I’d get to a second part until tomorrow, but I just got the book for review, so here we go.In this second installment we will look briefly at what DA Carson says positively about the Emergent movement. I am sad to say that I’ve seen some bloggers jump on his case before they have listened to him, and they are doing just what they are accusing him of doing. Whether or not some Emergent folk think Carson… Read more

April 16, 2005

As I told Andrew Jones in my blog at his site, I am a former colleague of DA Carson’s at TEDS; I had the office next to his for years; he is my friend; I consider him an expert; I do not have the book but I am in contact with those who know what is in it. I can sketch here only the briefest summaries of what is there, and I am encouraging everyone to buy it. And I… Read more

April 14, 2005

One of the more than 58,000 (count ‘em) names on the War Memorial to the Vietnam Veterans in Washington, D.C., is Barry Armstrong. We weren’t close, but we did play sandlot baseball together at the Little League field in Read Park in Freeport, Illinois. Boys who play pick-up games together are forever joined and so, when I saw Barry’s name on the Memorial, I was stirred far more deeply than I anticipated. “What would have become of him?” It hurt,… Read more

April 13, 2005

Alan Jacobs, in his brilliantly written and wide-ranging book, A Theology of Reading, makes a simple point that has sent my mind reeling and my heart into confession and prayer. Here it is: genuine interpretation of another’s writing is an act of love or it is an act of abuse. Either we treat the author as a person who has given voice to his or her inner heart and that we can trust, listen to, and respond to. Or, we… Read more

April 13, 2005

I have been skipping through some of Leo Tolstoy of late, and came upon William Shirer’s incredibly insightful study, Love and Hatred, which details the turbulent relationship of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy. For years and years they fought and warred and called one another hateful things, and then worked out their feelings in their diaries. The pattern was set: fight all day long, write about it at night, apologize, make up (which they didn’t always do), and then start all… Read more

April 10, 2005

Last night at Willow Randy Travis gave a mini-concert. The place was packed. We are not country fans, but his song on the three wooden crosses was good enough to make it on all kinds of charts, and won our hearts. He then led everyone in a worship song. And then he finished off with Forever and Ever, Amen.So today I’ve had a hard time getting that kind of music off my mind. Randy Travis has quite a story, and… Read more

April 9, 2005

I’ve been left wandering in my thoughts in my commute of late with a challenge to reach our world and our local communities more effectively. And my thoughts have considered at times how it was that Jesus drew so many to the kingdom. Here’s my conclusion: Jesus had the ability and willingness to establish permeable walls between himself and his world.John the Baptist, by calling people to get purified in the water of the Jordan, and Jesus, by calling people… Read more

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