The Emerging Church - the newest form of Gnosticism in the Church
on the Apostle John’s Epistles
now finds its expression in Christianity in what is called the
or emergent church. Like
Gnosticism itself, this is not an organization.
It’s not even a theological construct.
It’s just a worldview.
It’s how some people perceive reality.
So if you talk about what its tenets (信條
– principles, beliefs,
doctrines) are, you only talk about them in a general way, and
not everybody who agrees with that term necessarily agrees
with every one of the tenets. Just like not everyone who calls himself a born again
Christian believes that the commandments of the Bible are
you’ve got mixture of viewpoints coming together.
church simply says that truth is evolving.
It’s emerging (在暴露中).
For example, they say, you look at how God dealt with
the patriarchs. Everybody
offered his own sacrifice, and there were very few rules.
Then, when you moved into the Mosaic system, only one
family offered sacrifices, and there were lots of rules.
Then, you moved into the New Testament, and you saw the
elimination of the Mosaic Law, fewer rules and no sacrifices.
So they conclude that God is constantly revealing
Himself in fresh and new ways.
They say that truth is never static (靜止的).
It’s always dynamic (一直有活力的).
It’s always evolving (一直在逐步形成中).
[Thus, proponents of this
movement call it a “conversation” (非正式會談)
to emphasize its developing and decentralized nature as well
as its emphasis on interfaith dialogue rather than verbal
conclude that it’s the same today – as God speaks to His
people today, it’s as different it’s as different as the
Old and New Testament. They
say that now God [no longer brings
evil or disaster upon people but] is a God of love and [He
no longer demands obedience and righteous living but has] tolerance
[He no longer disciplines or judges
His people but is] a God of acceptance (歡迎),
so that in the olden days we thought homosexuality was a sin,
but now we’ve learned that that’s how God makes people.
So [they say], it makes us much more accepting and much
more broad-minded (胸開闊).
church would not argue that truth is relative.
They would say it’s absolute, and the community
decides what it is. The
community defines the absolutes, and the community now says
that the moral construct of the Bible is passé (過時的).
It’s not that the Bible is wrong.
It’s that the Bible is irrelevant.
The Bible will afford us the opportunity to see God in
action. It’s a
narrative, so we read it for narrative purposes.
Therefore, you go to church not to learn about God. You
go to church to experience God.
Now you know God through experience, not through the
revealed word of God, which is absolute and infallible.
They still say it’s the Bible; that’ the Word of
God – of course it is. They say if you want to see a narration of how Gods moves, if
you want to see a narration of His movement, the Bible is a
great place to go. In
this line of thinking, therefore, an insistence in obeying the
commandments of God is legalism.
As a matter of fact, if I obey them, it’s because I
agree with them, not because I’m obligated to keep them.
The agenda of the modern man or postmodern man –
global warming, AIDS, distribution of food to the common man
– these are the absolutes.
I came to
Christ about 54 or 55 years ago.
When I went to church I went to feel bad about myself.
I knew I was a sinner and expected the pastor to reveal
the world of God in a way to expose my needs so I could go and
work on them. Now,
people go to church to feel good about themselves.
Therefore, in the postmodern Emerging Church, preaching
on sin is out. Helping
people connect with God is in.
Evangelism is out.
Evangelism is chauvinistic (unreasoning devotion to
one’s own ideas with contempt for others – 沙文主義的).
It’s an unwarranted dogmatism based on assuming you
I read an article by senior pastor of the First Presbyterian
Church of Berkeley, which used to be a bulwark (wall built as
a defense – 壁壘)
of conservative thought.
The pastor, Mark Labberton, said, “Surely the God who
made 500 different kinds of hummingbirds is not the same God
who insists that there is only one way to heaven.”
And so you don’t go to church to get to know God.
Instead, your goal is to experience Him.
So essentially, you get a biblically illiterate
congregation, and it opens us up to eastern mysticism.
When I met
the Navigators we talked a lot about meditation.
You meditated on scripture to make it part of your
meditation is viewed as emptying your head and allowing
thoughts to fill you. That’s
how you know. That’s
a modern expression of Gnosticism.
I would say
– [this is] one’s man point of view – it is so
prevalent, so pervasive, that the war is over!
The battle is done!
Increasingly, men like us who sit at this table will be
marginalized, not only in society but also in the church.
I don't believe that my grandchildren will be able to
find Christ in the church.
So we have,
for example, the Archbishop of Canterbury saying that English
law has got to adapt to the other cultures, such as Islam, and
that we should allow their people to judge their people based
on their religion and we on ours.
Even evangelical leaders are saying we worship one God,
but we just call Him different names.
We enter into dialogue not for the purpose of
converting the individual, but for the purpose of mutual
edification in the hope that we can blend together religions
and thus eliminate war.
So I would suggest that in this country, the most we can hope for is to identify and invest in the overcomers.
If you are at all interested in this, all you have to do is google “Emerging Church” or “Emergent Church” or “post modernism”, and you’ll have a clear picture of what’s going on.
This web page was last updated on 03 September 2008 .