Monday, August 27, 2007

THINGS THAT MAKE ME GO HMMM

I think I've told all 12 of you that read this blog that I also follow or skim several other blogs from friends and ministry professionals and such. I have no idea how I ran across this one... but I read it occasionally.

I read it cuz he's someone I might enjoy a cup of coffee with, but I think we would end up on opposite sides of the street on several issues. It makes me think sometimes. Sometimes it makes me rethink. Sometimes it makes me even more confident as to why he and I would disagree. Sometimes it just makes me jealous of his job description: Stay at home Dad and teaching pastor at his church!!!

Anyway- the blogging world I read can easily be a discussion of all those who simply agree with everything I think... and I'm trying to be intentional about not doing that.

But this post about pragmatism (placing value on what works over anything else) seems cliche to me. It seems to smell of those who think if you have a video or lights or whatever, then you somehow have bowed to the culture of all things pagan. It's the stone everyone likes to throw at any growing church that happens to have a light board. It's the "well they must be shallow, lame, and nothing but an entertaining dog and pony show". It seems to very narrowly define what is spiritual or what tools God can or can't use to accomplish a divine purpose. I agree with points 6 and 7... but it seems that there's a lot of accusations or assumptions in the other points.

Then however.... as I kept reading, this post speaks of how his church has a staff member who is in charge of lighting. Oh.. and it's his best friend who is leaving to go work at the epicenter of all things pragmatic tied to the spiritual (willow creek community church).

Then while I wrote this post today, he rants about a divided church that is a movement of the anti-christ and then he starts naming names of those he doesn't like and evidently why they won't be in heaven but are worthy of throwing stones at them... which seems to be divisive to me all over again.

This kind of stuff makes me go Hmmmmm? God doesn't seem to like our boxes so much.

3 comments:

Jared 2:46 PM  

Appreciate the link and comments.

You are correct; if you read me to say lights and rock music and what-not are not kosher for church, you are not reading me correctly.

I serve in a quote-unquote "seeker church."

As for calling out people like Benny Hinn and Joel Osteen and other prosperity gospelists as false teachers . . . well, I don't mind not being in the box with them.
Would you say the same to Paul about his condemnation of the Judaizers?

brian c. berry 3:45 PM  

Jared,

really. We need to do coffee. Maybe someday we can. I think I'd really enjoy it.

As for Judaizers: I think Paul called out a group of people who were claiming circumcision is needed for salvation. Paul said it was bogus. (acts 15, gal 5, etc)

Regarding your post I saw as divisive:

I think your post called out a group of people who made a parody about what it means to be a in essence a genuine believer and accused them of division in the church because you didn't like which group was dressed which way. I think the deeper message of the video is true even if you swap wardrobes and make the "Christ follower" the stuffy looking guy... maybe it's even a better video. But in the end, I think it's meant to be a lot lighter and fun. It is, as you said, a parody of a modern day commericial. Sure there is an attempt to get people to think not just about what they "believe" they are, but what they actually do about it. I'm just not sure it's as deep and divisive as you claim.

Regarding Benny Hinn and Joel Osteen... I don't know enough about either of them to make the confident assertion you do. I don't anticipate that I would agree with much of their teaching. I don't know what they teach about salvation or the gospel. I have heard some stuff from Joel about how God wants you happy and wealthy and that runs crooked against pretty much the whole life of Jesus if those two are supposed to go hand and hand. John 16:33 says as much.

However, if you go Joel's church website and look at their statement of beliefs, it probably could be cut and pasted into yours. I think it could in mine. Assuming that is truly what Joel believes, then we differ on something beyond the gospel. Bottom line, I'm not sure if people in Joel's church are following Jesus. They might just do it differently than I do.

But in this case, you and joel and I are claiming to follow Jesus. In the case of Paul, the same is true, except that one group is trying to tell the other the road to salvation is through the door of legalism. If I understand correctly, Joel is telling people to trust in the blood of Jesus for salvation and to follow Him only. If so, they we differ on what a redeemed life looks like.

None of us are claiming that in order to do so, you must cut off your foreskin.

thanks for commenting... I laughed. I think you're the first ever to do so on a post with links to their site. Made me smile.

Scott B,  7:05 PM  

BBBB & Jared,
I like the interaction. I know Brian, never heard of Jared. I didn't like the video either, but there was a part of it that resonated. The hyper-spirituals with all the answers drive me nuts. Not sure I'm totally against all the piss and vinegar Jared displayed, just would like to feel the 'grace' you spoke of in your post, directed toward the "authentics".

I think you guys should have coffee for sure. Good thinkers need to connect. Jared's stuff on false Gospels strikes a cord, and Brian's need for mulitiple expressions is a breathe of fresh air. Blessings on both of your ministries.

Scott - Little Rock

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