The Biblio-Files

bib·li·o·phile (bĭb'lē-ə-fīl') n.

1. A lover of books.
2. A collector of books.

14.5.08

Why We're Not Emergent: (By Two Guys Who Should Be)

First of all, you can check the official website here. And, you can read a good review by Phil Johnson at Pyromaniac, here. Phil Johnson has highlighted much of what I wanted to highlight about this book--the same quotes and everything! Nevertheless, I will briefly give my two cents on this helpful work.

What Is This Book For?
Basically, DeYoung and Kluck are young, Reformed, and convinced that you don't have to jump on the emergent bandwagon to save Christianity. I agree. There is so much in this book that it would be difficult to summarize it briefly. I will just say that they cover all the bases. From the vague notion of spiritual "journeying" to the disdain for dogmatic propositions, I think this work puts its finger square on the defining issues that characterize the EC. If you've ever tried to have an opinion about what the EC does, you've realized that it's hard and frustrating. Interacting with those who are full-blown emergent can get opinionated and emotional very quickly. One usually winds up chasing provocative wording rather than actually grasping the substance of what the EC is about. Yet, for a movement that is known for its ambiguity and anti-dogmatism, Kluck and DeYoung do an exceptional job hitting the nail on the head.

Quotes
Check out quotes from Pyromaniac (link above). But, I will say that these guys bring it. They are quotable often, and word their thoughts in a piercing kind of way. You'll definitely want to memorize some of their statements and keep them handy as you think through issues with the EC. They are right on and very helpful.

My Recommendation
I would recommend this book to all who are interested in a good, biblical, Reformed argument against some of the more dangerous corners of the EC. These guys are gifted writers and posses the ability to articulate their position with clarity and biblical conviction. They are quotable on almost every page. It is clear that they have done their research. They have read most all of the major books by most all of the major authors of the EC, and have spent time in emergent churches. I have found that when it comes to reading McClaren, Bell, and others, you have to really spend time reading them charitably and listening to what they are trying to say. Otherwise, you will read them, but you won't read them. You'll wind up wasting your time chasing after their provocative wording yet all the while thinking you have something to say about the EC. I think this work is trustworthy and offers critiques that one can feel safe making their own. The approach is humble, but firm and intellectual. Go out and getcha one.

Further Thoughts
Now, I and my wife joyfully attend an Acts29 (emerging, though not emergent) church here in Louisville. (I am a HUGE Mark Driscoll and Matt Chandler fan.) Though our church is on the more conservative, Reformed end of the emerging church spectrum, there are many similarities that our church shares with those of the less conservative end (i.e., an emphasis on community, cultural engagement, etc.). We have learned a ton and have been sanctified tremendously. We feel that our church has done a work in us that is unique and honoring to Christ. The EC is primarily a reactionary movement against some of the dead-traditionalism that indeed exists in evangelicalism. There are those who stand guilty of over-correcting, while others stand guilty of not taking such reactions seriously. The EC should be called out for where they endanger the Christian faith, but I am of the opinion that they should be heard out and sometimes heeded. The key is balance and discernment. This book can help you think through all that.

Thoughts? Comments?
Peace.
EP

2 comments:

Shea Politte said...

I'm pumped that we actually have this book in our possession. :) Keep up the posts!!

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