Saturday, April 16, 2005

Koukl on McLaren...

In How to do Postmodern Theology, Greg Koukl gives us his views on Brian McLaren's latest book, The Last Word and the Word after That. Greg also provides us with a brief analysis of the dangers inherent in the Postmodern mindset embraced by the Emerging Church. He writes,
McLaren is instructing us on how to do theology the postmodern way. "Clear" answers are pejoratively "pat;" vagueness (McLaren's stock in trade) is "astute." Theological determinations that are formulaic (Chalcedon's "one person, two natures"?), and categorical ("Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father" 1 John 2:23?), are dismissed as "simple." However, it may be that some religious issues-particularly the most important ones-are made clear by God for a reason: They are vitally important. The more I read McLaren (e.g., below from "A Generous Orthodoxy"), the more I think he is simply in a different universe from Jesus, Paul, John, Peter, et al. Very little McLaren says bears any resemblance to the claims of these men. He meanders about ambiguously and semi-coherently--"I believe he [Jesus] came to open something beyond religion -- a new possibility, a realm, a domain, a territory of the spirit that welcomes everyone but requires everyone (now including members of the Christian religion) to think again and become like little children" (p. 266 AGO)--on issues that are deadly serious, issues on which the biblical writers were painstakingly clear.
Think about this for a moment. If, according to the gurus of the Emergent Church movement, "clear" answers are pejoratively "pat" and vagueness is "astute," then how are we to take the instruction (so-called) they provide us with? Not very seriously, I'm afraid.

1 comment:

Paul said...

One of the things I find intriguing about Christianity (and for that matter many other religions) is the idea that the Christians who came before whoever is speaking were well intentioned, and close, but wrong. Similarly the ones who come afterwards are (probably) well intentioned, and close, but wrong. Only the speaker's chosen flavor of Christianity, it is claimed, has managed to get God's will just right. And none of these speakers seems to recognize the surprising coincidence of their Goldilocks position.