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The emerging church and the one project part 1


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The Emerging Church and The One Project? is a series of PowerPoint presentations asking the question if there is in fact a connection between the two. The purpose of the presentations are not to lambast those who want to lift Jesus up, but rather to allow leaders of the One Project to tell us in their own words (and the words of those promoting the project) what their goals and aspirations really are, and how these goals have been enacted in their past experiences.
Presentation 1 of 10 is a summary of the Emerging Church as defined on Wikipedia. This is a summary of the 17 page article found there which is taken from many leading proponents of the Emerging Church here in America.
Presentations 2 through 4 deal with Leonard Sweet, a leader in the Emerging Church movement and a professor at George Fox University, and many of the nearly 50 books he has authored which express his various viewpoints.
Presentations 5 through 9 deal with the five main leaders of The One Project, four of which graduated with or started DMin degrees from George Fox University under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet. In each presentation an objective look is taken at material in print telling of each leaders work and ministry up to 2012. The question will naturally follow; is this the direction we should be leading our young people in the Adventist Church?
Presentation 10 deals with the One Project gathering in Seattle, February of 2012, looking at the claims of the Project “Jesus. All” and comparing this to what really took place at the gathering. Yes, there was some good points made, and we need to lift Jesus up, but…. We also take a look at a little of the evidence suggesting The One Project is a response to GYC.
For a fully interactive edition of all 10 presentations with video clips, contact:

Published in: Education, Spiritual
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The emerging church and the one project part 1

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  3. 3.   Emerging Church: “is a Christian movement of the late 20th and early 21st centuries that crosses a number of theological boundaries: participants can be described as Protestant, post-Protestant, catholic, evangelical,[1] post-evangelical, liberal, post-liberal, conservative, post-conservative, anabaptist, adventist,[2] reformed, charismatic, neocharismatic, and post-charismatic. “ “In the US, some Roman Catholics have also begun to describe themselves as being part of the emergent conversation.[1]” 3
  4. 4.  “Stuart Murray states: „Emerging churches are so disparate there are exceptions to any generalisations. Most are too new and too fluid to clarify, let alone assess their significance. There is no consensus yet about what language to use: 'new ways of being church'; 'emerging church'; 'fresh expressions of church'; 'future church'; 'church next'; or „the coming church‟.” 4
  5. 5.    “Proponents believe the movement transcends such „modernist‟ labels of „conservative‟ and „liberal,‟ calling the movement a „conversation‟ to emphasize its developing and decentralized nature, its vast range of standpoints [beliefs], and its commitment to dialogue.” “What those involved in the conversation mostly agree on is their disillusionment with the organized and institutional church and their support for the deconstruction of modern Christian worship, modern evangelism, and the nature of modern Christian community.” “The emerging church favors the use of simple story and narrative.” 5
  6. 6.  “Members of the movement often place a high value on good works or social activism, including missional living.[3] While some Evangelicals emphasize eternal salvation, many in the emerging church emphasize the here and now.”[4] 6
  7. 7.  “Gibbs and Bolger[24] interviewed a number of people involved in leading emerging churches and from this research have identified some core values in the emerging church, including desires to imitate the life of Jesus; transform secular society; emphasize communal living; welcome outsiders; be generous and creative; and lead without control.” 7
  8. 8.  “Emerging Christians began to challenge the modern church on issues such as: institutional structures, systematic theology, propositional teaching methods, a perceived preoccupation with buildings, an attractional understanding of mission, professional clergy, and a perceived preoccupation with the political process and unhelpful jargon („Christian-ese‟).[35]” 8
  9. 9.  “As a result, some in the emerging church believe it is necessary to deconstruct modern Christian dogma. One way this happens is by engaging in dialogue, rather than proclaiming a predigested message, believing that this [dialogue] leads people to Jesus through the Holy Spirit on their own terms.” 9
  10. 10.  “The emerging church movement contains a great diversity in beliefs and practices, although some have adopted a preoccupation with sacred rituals, good works, and political and social activism. Much of the Emerging Church movement has also adopted the approach to evangelism which stressed peerto-peer dialogue rather than dogmatic proclamation and proselytizing.[36]” 10
  11. 11.   “A plurality of Scriptural interpretations is acknowledged in the emerging church movement. Participants in the movement exhibit a particular concern for the effect of the modern reader's cultural context on the act of interpretation echoing the ideas of postmodern thinkers. …” “Some emerging church leaders see interfaith dialogue a means to share their narratives as they learn from the narratives of others.” 11
  12. 12.   “A Christian is then defined by their focus and movement toward Christ rather than a limited set of shared beliefs and values.[39]” “Teachers in the Emerging Church tend to view the Bible and its stories through a lens which they believe finds significance and meaning for their community's social and personal stories rather than for the purpose of finding cross-cultural, propositional absolutes regarding salvation and conduct.[41]” 12
  13. 13.  “The emerging church claims they are creating a safe environment for those with opinions ordinarily rejected within modern conservative evangelicalism and fundamentalism. Noncritical, interfaith dialog is preferred over dogmatically-driven evangelism in the movement.[42] Story and narrative replaces the dogmatic:” 13
  14. 14.  “The bible is no longer a principal source of morality, functioning as a rulebook. The gradualism of postmodernity has transformed the text into a guide, a source of spirituality, in which the power of the story as a moral reference point has superseded the didactic [instruction or teaching].” 14
  15. 15.  “Those in the movement do not engage in aggressive apologetics or confrontational evangelism in the traditional sense, preferring to encourage the freedom to discover truth through conversation and relationships with the Christian community.[44]” 15
  16. 16.  “This can involve everything from expressive, neocharismatic style of worship and the use of contemporary music and films to more ancient liturgical customs and eclectic expressions of spirituality, with the goal of making the church gathering reflect the local community's tastes.” 16
  17. 17.  “Emerging church practitioners are happy to take elements of worship from a wide variety of historic traditions, including traditions of the Catholic Church, the Anglican churches, the Orthodox churches, and Celtic Christianity. From these and other religious traditions emerging church groups take, adapt and blend various historic church practices including liturgy, prayer beads, icons, spiritual direction, the labyrinth, and lectio divina. The Emerging Church is also sometimes called the „Ancient-Future‟ church.[61]” 17
  18. 18.  “One of the key social drives in Western Postindustrialized countries, is the rise in new/old forms of mysticism. … Therefore, the Emerging Church is operating in a new context of postmodern spirituality, as a new form of mysticism. … many people now believe in and are searching for something more spiritual (postmodern view). This has been characterized as a major shift from religion to spirituality.” 18
  19. 19.   “[T]he Emerging Church Movement is seeking to missionally assist people to shift from being spiritual tourists to Christian pilgrims. Many are drawing on ancient Christian resources recontextualised into the contemporary such as contemplation and contemplative forms of prayer, symbolic multi-sensory worship, story telling and many others.[66] This again has required a change in focus as the majority of unchurched and dechurched people are seeking 'something that works' rather than something that is „true‟. [67]” ( 19
  20. 20.              World wide movement Involves all of Christendom and other religions Includes some in Seventh-day Adventist Church Has many good sounding stated values and goals Represents those with vast difference in beliefs Seeks to find agreement on key points Moving from authority of Scripture to narratives Culture and experience rather than absolute truth Moves from Biblical organization to individualism Worship combines old & new forms of mysticism Brings about change through “Conversations” etc. Involves much more than Contemplative Prayer, etc. Separates mission work from gospel message 20
  21. 21.        “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” (Luke 4:18-19) 21
  22. 22.   “Christ's method alone will give true success in reaching the people. The Saviour mingled with men as one who desired their good. He showed His sympathy for them, ministered to their needs, and won their confidence. Then He bade them, „Follow Me.‟“ “There is need of coming close to the people by personal effort. If less time were given to sermonizing, and more time were spent in personal ministry, greater results would be seen. The poor are to be relieved, the sick cared for, the sorrowing and the bereaved comforted, the ignorant instructed, the inexperienced counseled. We are to weep with those that weep, and rejoice with those that rejoice. Accompanied by the power of persuasion, the power of prayer, the power of the love of God, this work will not, cannot, be without fruit.” (Ministry of Healing, p. 143) 22
  23. 23. (May-Ellen Colón, “Once a Month Jesus Comes and Holds my Hand,” Elders Digest, Dec. 2011, pp. 26-27; 23
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