Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - Printable Version

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Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - sonworshiper - 10-06-2006


I was just reading a thread at another list, having to do with Emergent Churches and such. . . .steming from Dan Kimball's book Emergent Worship. . . .

I bought that book, but never really finished it and can't quite get into it.

My question then would be--without getting too theological or anything. . .what do you all think of that term?? What in SIMPLE terms does it mean? What in SIMPLE terms is an emergent church??? What does emergent worship look like or sound like??

As well. . . . tell me what you think of non-denominational churches. . . .originally, it seemed to be, churches that didn't fit into the regular denominational molds, they weren't "under" any one denomination. Now it seems that the tag "non-denominational" has become it's own denomination. Opinions??




Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - HelenaZF - 10-09-2006

I'm not familiar with the terms "emergent churches" or "emergent worship", so I'll check that out a bit before I comment.

However, I do have some thoughts on non-denomination churches. I think they come about partly because of a desire to be free of traditional trappings and restraints in order to take advantage of the fluid nature of the charismatic. And I think that they also come about because of a lack of understanding of kingdom government. The weakness of most non-denominational churches is that there is a lack of accountability (and therefore a lack of spiritual protection) that comes from being under God-established authority.

It is one of the reasons we are now in a denominational church. We were in non-denominational fellowships for many years, and in many ways, it is like floating alone down a river that has no banks. I think we need the boundaries given to us by appropriate government, and when we don't have that, all kinds of things can go wrong. Launching off on our own everytime there is a new spiritual "idea" puts us in a dangerous position. You never need to learn the discipline of being under authority. Even Jesus was man "under authority", as proclaimed by the centurion in the gospel accounts. It's something to consider.

And you are right, "non-denominational" has become a kind of grouping. But I think that on examination, you will find that they are basically fellowships, or associations. There is no real accountability, mentoring, or discipling from government. It's kind of like a bunch of groups that form a club.

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - HelenaZF - 10-11-2006

I found a pretty simple explanation with examples on what emergent worship is all about. You can read it here:

<URL url="http://www.cpinternet.com/~robbfc/pwarchive/html/PEEW_paper.htm#d"><LINK_TEXT text="http://www.cpinternet.com/~robbfc/pwarc ... aper.htm#d">http://www.cpinternet.com/~robbfc/pwarchiv...EEW_paper.htm#d</LINK_TEXT>

It seems to be, simply, stretching concepts about the current ways we worship, making the focus of our worship God-directed rather than us-directed (I like that one), and finding new ways of expression that involve all of the senses.

I couldn't find anything in the explanation that I would argue with, although some of the examples of how to break past the norms seemed a bit contrived (like putting the band in the center of the room.)

I did think that the acronym for Postmodern/Experiential/Emergent Worship, PEEW, is a bit unfortunate. Pee-You?

Is there some part of the concept that you'd like to discuss?

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - DeanZF - 10-11-2006

For those in that movement, the term means coming out of the traditional understanding of church, emerging from the traditional.

As was heavily discussed on the Worship Discussion list, Emergent Church (EC) is a movement (they prefer the word "conversation") that takes a very different interpretation of all things Christian and all things scriptural.

One of the foremost red flags for me is the extreme emphasis on community and the extreme minimalization of the personal aspect of salvation. Is that enough of a red flag??

Some of what they are talking about has merit. Most heresy does. Most erroneous doctrine takes a nugget of truth and surrounds it with a bunch of quasi-logical statements that blow enough smoke to make it sound ethereal, somewhat mystical, and much more spiritual that what YOU're doing! The Holier-Than-Thou crowd in new clothing.

The piece that Helena quoted by Matthew Campbell is really about trying to modernize worship. It refers to McLaren's writings. McLaren is one of the founding voices of the ECMovement.

A quote from a friend who attended a John Piper conference at the end of September:
<QUOTE author="Earl McCullough">
Earl McCullough Wrote:Be aware, the emergent church may have clever, and perhaps effective methods. But has questionable, if not doctrinally dangerous beliefs that are often left vague and ambiguous.

[One speaker at that conference,] Marc Driscoll, the most radical and post-modern of the bunch, was associated with the emergent church many years ago, and broke off when he saw that they were moving towards compromising the gospel. snip

I would say regarding the emergent impact on worship, we need to not necessarily adjust to and accomodate the emergent church movement, but rather to react against it's danger areas...for example, to scrutinize the words and message of songs to ensure they are biblically accurate and that they expound the essentials of our faith, so our songs are worthy offerings to a Holy God.  As far as post-modern goes, we should probably be more aware of how we can package the gospel without losing authenticity, so that it is relevant to those we are leading/teaching/evangelizing/etc...

<QUOTE author="Berit Kjos">
Berit Kjos Wrote:Berit Kjos also wrote, "The emerging church movements today are still  trying to move the boundaries of His Kingdom. They have redefined God's Word and are fast embracing the latest versions of the old Gnostic quest for secret

knowledge (gnosis) and self-actualization, whether through mystical experience 

or collective imagination. Stamping out faith in Biblical absolutes is central to this transformation. A mind anchored in God's Word won't compromise, but when  that anchor is removed, the current of change can carry that mind anywhere."

And there is TONS more out there on the Internet about the "merits" and the deceptions credited to the ECM.

Short and sweet, Moe? The ECMovement wants to minimize the individual-focused saving acts of Christ. That's a bad thing. It wants to change scripture's intents. That's a bad thing. Do you need more??

Oh, there's one other way of looking at this. Would I criticize and dismiss an entire movement for a few bad practices and a couple of stupid statements by its founders? Oh, heck yes! In fact, I have dismissed an entire movement for a single letter! Read the Watchtower version of the Bible. John 1:1 "In the beginning was the word; and the word was with God and the word was A god." [emphasis added]. The denial of the efficacy of Christ for each individual is anti-Christ, denying His mission, refuting the very Word of God! NOT A GOOD THING!!!

Want me to tell you how I really feel??? :rant:

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - flaglady - 10-11-2006

Think we got that, Dean! And thanks for that explanation. There's been a couple of threads in another forum about it and I was a bit bothered by not understanding it because it's the forum I moderate!!

There's also a lot of chat about PostCharismatic! Huh?!!

I have about 1000 words pasted onto a document in back of this window that I need to read to understand what that's all about. Heck, I only just got my head around the difference between Pentecostal and Charismatic - until last year I didn't know there was a difference!

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - HelenaZF - 10-11-2006

Post Charismatic? Another one I haven't heard...

I have to say that it caused this phrase to pop into mind:

PCSS - Post Charismatic Stress Sydrome --- I think I might have it. Big Grin

On the emergent worship thing, I didn't find any hints of the heresies Dean mentions above. In fact I found I agreed with many of the points made in the article. The only inaccuracies I found were in the description of Contemporary Worship Today in a section of the article that I didn't reference in the link above.

I'm glad Dean came into the thread and gave some balance to the discussions. A reminder that we have to be discerning and also open to hear the voices around us that we trust.

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - etherea - 11-01-2006

What is the difference between a pentecostal and a charismatic? Don't they both believe in the operation of spiritual gifts?

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - flaglady - 11-02-2006

This was gleaned from the Google wikki

"The Pentecostal movement within Evangelical Christianity places special emphasis on the direct personal experience of God through the gifts of the Holy Spirit, as shown in the Biblical account of the Day of Pentecost."

"Often confused with Pentecostalism (which it was inspired by), charismatic Christianity tends to differ in key aspects: most charismatics reject the preeminence given by Pentecostalism to speaking in tongues, reject what they consider to be legalism sometimes associated with Pentecostalism, and often stay in their existing denominations such as Roman Catholic Charismatics."

You can find more on <URL url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentecostalism">Google Wikkipeadia

Hope this helps!!

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - DeanZF - 11-03-2006

It's not a real easy job, defining the differences! Smile

Both believe in the modern expressions of the Spirit through believers, especially within the context of the body. Both believe that those expressions should be in agreement with Scripture.

One tends to be denominational (pentecostals) and the other tends to be either within mainstream denominations or as independent bodies.

Classic Pentecostals define salvation in light of the infilling of the Holy Spirit. They'll tell you that if you've not spoken in tongues, you're not saved. That's the pharisaic portion that the little wikki entry refers to.

There's lots more out there, I'm sure, precious little of which has anything to do with the emergent church movement per se. There can be those who wander off the beaten path in ANY line of Christianity. Sadly. Sad

Emergent Churches / Emergent Worship - HelenaZF - 11-03-2006

Quote:Stamping out faith in Biblical absolutes is central to this transformation. A mind anchored in God's Word won't compromise, but when  that anchor is removed, the current of change can carry that mind anywhere."
Quote:...we need to not necessarily adjust to and accomodate the emergent church movement, but rather to react against it's danger areas...for example, to scrutinize the words and message of songs to ensure they are biblically accurate and that they expound the essentials of our faith, so our songs are worthy offerings to a Holy God. 

I think these two quotes from Dean's post really point out why we have to be so careful about the songs we choose to lead others in worship (a topic we've hashed out in other places on this forum.) We can't afford to discard biblical accuracy for poetic pleasantness and catchy contemporary tunes that lull us into thinking they are good worship songs because they feel like good worship songs. We really have a responsibility to look past the popularity of them and hold them up against the measuring rod of the Word.