[blog under construction]
I am copying and pasting a blog verbatim, showing the Emerging/Emergent Church’s heretical view of evangelism. I have emphasized certain points by bolding, and added comments in [bracketing]. Click here for the original blog.
Note – I would say Emerging/Emergent individuals lie on a spectrum regarding their view of salvation through Christ. The following blog describes individuals that are toward the Emergent, non-believer end of the spectrum. Not only do they abhor the idea of preaching sin, hell and damnation. They do not even hold to the belief that Jesus is the only Way to Heaven (as is taught in John Chapter 3).
Here is the blog:
Does the Emerging church have a problem with evangelism?
Sitting around with a group of leaders in the early days of the Emerging church. Talking about reinventing the church for the postmodern context etc.
This floors me: “You know we’re just not reaching postmoderns. Maybe it’s like reaching Muslims. We could spend a whole lifetime and hardly see any new believers.”
Shocked because I’m talking to the people who are leading and training others in how to do church.
This statement attributed to Stuart Murray-Williams: “So far, emerging churches have had limited success, particularly in evangelism and helping those unchurched people to enter into the church.”
This from Todd Hunter: “the movement as a whole (and most of its parts) is not doing a bang up job at evangelism.”
Does the Emerging church have a problem with evangelism? Depends what you mean by “evangelism.”
For the Emerging church described by Gibbs and Bolger, evangelism has more to do with presence than proclamation; more to do with lifestyle than words; more to do with engagement than conversion.
Attempts to convert others or to proclaim the truth with certainty are rejected. Evangelism is redefined as remaining open to God at work in other religions. Remaining open to being evangelised by other faiths.
The authors describe one Emerging evangelism project as “the reverse of most forms of evangelism. They visit people of other faiths and spiritualities and allow themselves to be evangelized in order to learn more about other walks of life.”
A leader explains, “We deemphasize the idea that Christians have God and all others don’t by attempting to engage in open two-way conversations. . . . We are also genuinely open to being wrong about parts and perhaps all of our beliefs—while at the same time being fully committed to them.”
Another says, evangelism “is no longer about persuading people to believe what I believe. . . . It is more about shared experiences and encounters. It is about walking the journey of life and faith together, each distinct to his or her own tradition and culture but with the possibility of encountering God and truth from one another.”
Does the Emerging church have a problem with evangelism? Not if you redefine what evangelism is.
Now here’s the rub. With an understanding of evangelism like this, there is just no way you are going to reach people. But maybe that’s not the point anymore.
Additional articles about this issue:
The Inclusive Gospel: Commentary by Roger Oakland