Around the Horn

First Base: Norm continues his interaction with Pete Rollins’s new book at Christians in Context.  Pete’s also commenting in response.

Second Base: Darren King interviewed me for Precipice Magazine.

Third Base: David Fitch takes on Mark Driscoll.

Home Plate: Steve Knight has a Mega-Post on Evangelicalism at EV.

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  • That Driscoll thing is sticking in my craw this morning. I had a conversation along a similar vein not too long ago where someone was talking about another mega-church and the dramatic conversion stories that are part of that church’s promotional voice. He wondered if we have those kinds of stories at the Porch and if we did, why he’s never heard them.

    So here’s the response I wish I’d given him:
    Of course we have those stories at the Porch. We have recovering drug addicts and alcoholics as well as converted Jews and pagans and satan-worshipers. They have come to our church uncertain of what they’d find and come to know Jesus in a way they never had before. They have “converted” in the most Driscollian sense. They weren’t Christians and now they are.

    But we don’t talk about those stories because conversion isn’t–or at least shouldn’t be–a marketing tool. For us to hold up those stories as somehow the point of who we are and what we’re about suggests that our community is about only one kind of conversion–from non-Christian to Christian. But the reality is that our church is about all of the conversions that come with a life lived following God in the way of Jesus.

    And honestly, that whole “conversion” conversation smacks of elitist theology. The drug addict’s conversion isn’t any more dramatic than the one I experience whenever I come to know God in a deeper way or repent or make an effort to take one more step closer to God. The converted Jew wasn’t any farther away from God than I have been during my life as a Christian. In fact, if we want to talk about God as some kind of fixed point toward which we travel, it might very well be the case that the Jew or the alcoholic are much closer to God than I am. The point of redemption and reconcilliation with God is that we all need it every day. Mark Driscoll needs it as much as anyone else in the city of Seattle. I need it as much as anyone else in the city of Minneapolis. If we believe that, then the fact that I show up at church every week and try to follow God every day is as miraculous as the “conversion” of the pagan.

    Okay. I feel better now. I really need to get my own blog.