Monday, March 22, 2010

if only they would follow their own advice

I almost wonder how this particular article made it on to TheOoze. Or if I'm missing something.

Let me assure you, Jesus is not who you think He is. He is more glorious, more powerful, more confusing, more fascinating, and more radically inclusive than you or I can possibly imagine.

Perhaps this will give a bit of answer. Jesus is "more radically inclusive". Given that the main Oozer, Spencer Burke, is a committed universalist, then no doubt "more radically inclusive" is at least pointing towards universalism.

I don’t know about you, but if I am offered a choice between the Jesus I have made in my own image or the Jesus I have not fully understood yet, I would rather have the Jesus who is still bigger than my ability to understand, who defies my description, who challenges my preconceptions, and who takes my breath away. I would rather have the real Jesus, and I have to be willing to admit that the real Jesus may not fit into my convenient little box.

There's something to be said for this, but you still need to have some understanding of Jesus if you're going to have "the real Jesus". And the rhetoric of an 'outside the box' Jesus is open to some potential misconstruings.

Let Jesus be who he really is. Jesus is not your UFC fighting champion. Jesus is not your flag-waving Republican (or Democrat). Jesus is not your blue-eyed all-American boy.

Don’t fabricate a version of Jesus who happens to share your political viewpoint, or who hates all the same people you hate, or who tolerates all the minor sins you happen to practice.

What I found rather amusing was how, on the left side of the page where this article can be found, there is an advertisement for McLaren's "A New Kind of Christianity". A more glaring example of someone who has "fabricate(d) a version of Jesus who happens to share (the author's) political viewpoint, or who hates of the same people (he) hate(s), or who tolerates all the minor sins (he) happen(s) to practice" you will have a hard time finding.

It's not that it isn't a bit of good advice, but I do wish the emergents would practice it themselves, before telling us to do the same. It may give the words a bit of added impetus if they did so, rather than seeming like a bit of spin control.


William L. Anderson said...

This is in line with so-called post-modernism. First, they say something with which we can agree: We in our current state cannot fully comprehend or understand God.

However, then they deduce from that point that whatever we might believe of God probably is wrong, or that theology is "putting God into our box."

In logic, this is known as a non sequitur, but McLaren and the other Emergents constantly use it to put down the historical Christian doctrines. Look throughout their discussions, and you will see the same dishonest pattern.

jazzact13 said...

I agree. I probably wouldn't have known what to call it until you named it, but I can recognize it, to some extent.

The whole "outside the box" rhetoric is starting to wear on me, because it is essentially meaningless. To say something is "different" is not to answer the question of whether it is good or bad, right or wrong.