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The emerging church and the one project part 5


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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:

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The emerging church and the one project part 5

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  3. 3.   “‟It‟ is the One project. The story of its inception is reminiscent of a modern day parable. Seven men shared a common bond: A deep love for Jesus. Their lives were already committed to Christ, but there was something in each of them that desired to be re-centered both in their own spiritual lives and within the Church they love. The question was: how?” “Each of them are leaders in the Seventh-day Adventist Church: Alex Bryan, senior pastor at the Walla Walla University Church; Japhet De Oliveira, director of the Center for Youth Evangelism and chaplain for missions at Andrews University; Dany Hernandez, pastor for collegiate and young adult ministries at Forest Lake Adventist Church; Eddie Hypolite, associate youth director for the South England Conference, UK; Sam Leonor, pastor for LaSierra University; Tim Gillespie, pastor for young adult ministries at Loma Linda University Church of Seventh-day Adventists; and Terry Swenson, campus chaplain for Loma Linda University. …” (cont.) 3
  4. 4.   “For 9 months, they planned. Then came a day in July 2010 when five of them gathered at a Holiday Inn in Denver, joined periodically by the other two through the wonders of modern technology. For two days, they prayed. They fasted. They shared in communion. They reflected upon a simple statement: Jesus. All.” ( “In July 2010, five simple Jesus followers (Alex Bryan, Japhet De Oliveira, Sam Leonor, Tim Gillespie and Terry Swenson) got together in room 602 at the Holiday Inn in Denver. We came together for fellowship and prayer. We had planned this gathering for over a year and eventually found the time when all our calendars lined up. After two days of prayer, fasting, communion and reflection we looked across the room at each other and acknowledged again that Jesus was number one. …” 4
  5. 5.  “It sounds incredibly simple, but it was our „ah-ha‟ moment. We spoke in truth and freedom that Jesus should be number one in everything we do. We remembered the energy that started the Seventh-day Adventist Church was a deep desire to see Jesus return. Our movement was led by youth and adults, and like the 12 disciples, burned with a passion to know Jesus and make Him known.” (Japhet De Oliveira, “The One Project: Our Purpose and Mission,” assets/documents/the-one-project.pdf)  “As their conversations unfolded, their mission began to take shape. After returning home to their respective ministries, they began to talk about the One project and invite others to join them. … „We dreamed of starting something to stimulate the preaching, worship and adoration of Jesus within and throughout the Seventh-day Adventist Church. … The One project is a partner of the Center for Youth Evangelism, a training and resource center for claiming, training and reclaiming youth and young adults for Jesus Christ. It is located on the campus of Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Mich., as part of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary.” ( 5
  6. 6.   “The annual gathering of The One Project has its roots in Japhet De Oliveira‟s 2009 cancer diagnosis, which he says was a wake-up call. With the threat of a worsening sickness looming over him, De Oliveira met with a support group for two days in a Denver hotel in 2010. He and four fellow pastors revealed and examined issues in their lives. Now, his cancer in remission, De Oliveira has seen that small group grow into an annual gathering of hundreds of Seventh-day Adventists seeking to reconnect with Jesus in their personal and corporate worship. …” “De Oliveira admits he had „sort of lost [his] way,‟ focusing on success as a pastor and not caring enough for his family or health. „I would only read the Bible to prepare sermons,‟ he said…. ‟It was a real honest conversation,‟ De Oliveira said. „Some crying and a lot of praying. We said, “let‟s do this at least once a year.”‟” (Ansel Oliver, “The One Project makes Jesus center of theology,” Adventist News Network, Feb. 17, 2012; /articles/2012/02/17/the-one-project-makes-jesus-center-of-theology) 6
  7. 7.   “Look, it happened one day in Denver, that we got together, broke and hurting people—people that a lot of people looked at and said; Oh their great, their fine, life is good. But we are hurting and burnt out, and dreaming dreams that we don‟t want to think about anymore, because you just want to put them in a box and hide them cause it hurts to treasure them anymore. And we came together as friends and we really just wanted to escape for a while. And we came there, and we all wanted something but it was, we weren‟t ready to step in a circle, we weren‟t ready to open up. …” “And I was so broken and hungry, that I said guys, we‟ve got to open up. We were talking here, oh it was great theology, church plans, I mean we had oh yea, and I just said I‟m going to take a chance guys. And everybody just went, uuuhhhh. And then it happened. And we said, It happened. And we walked away and said can it get bigger? Can the circle expand? Could it be that we could tear down the walls? I don‟t want to fight the battle anymore! I‟m through! I am tired of seeing members and beautiful people, leaders like you, who crash and burn and die. I‟m tired of seeing honey but it turns to ashes in my mouth. It‟s about Jesus. If people want to march over here, „well, we‟re the church,‟ okay fine, but I‟m going to follow Jesus.” (Terry Swenson, “Jesus in our Experience,” talk given Feb. 8, 2011, Atlanta One Project; 7
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  9. 9.   “Director of CYE [Center for Youth Evangelism located at Andrews University], Chaplain for Missions and Interim Dir. for MA [Master‟s degree] Youth Ministry. … Pastor De Oliveira is an energetic and innovative leader with a passion for young people. Japhet earned his BA in theology and an MA in Religion with a certificate in church growth from Andrews University on the Newbold College campus.” “What I'd be if not a pastor: Dr. Indiana Jones Obsessed with: Apple Mac computers Defining moment: Watching Raiders of the Lost Ark and thinking, „That could be me!‟—but as a missionary, rather than an archeologist. Not keen on all the snakes though. First job: McDonald's. That was where I developed my lifelong passion for fitness and healthy eating. ( ) 9
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  11. 11.  “Japhet De Oliveira comes from England where he has served as Youth Director for the South England Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, 2003-2006. He is an energetic and innovative leader with a passion for young people. During his time as youth director and as a youth pastor for the Stanborough Park Church in Watford, England, De Oliveira began multiple youth ministry initiatives. Just a sampling of his work includes projects such as London Live, a new 20/30something church led by young adults in the city of London; HUB, a monthly journal for youth ministry leaders across England; and the new Diploma in Youth Leadership program at Newbold College in Binfield, England.” ( staff/japhet_de_oliveira.html) 11
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  13. 13.  “Going somewhere new for the first time can be a little daunting. We‟re a friendly bunch though, so you‟ll feel comfortable right away. Here is what you can expect.           Casual, relaxed atmosphere Weekend worship experience that starts 4:30 pm every Saturday Thought-provoking, relevant presentations based on the Bible Teaching from Pastor Paul King-Brown that will be available on Live worship music Wonderful free food after every worship experience Friendly and genuine people who hang out chat throughout the week having coffee or pizza Question are more than welcome Available steps to help you get to know Jesus Constant opportunities to get involved and help others ( 13
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  18. 18.   “Biography: Jim Belcher (M.A., Fuller; Ph.D., Georgetown) is founding church planter and lead pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach, California. He is the cofounder of the Restoring Community Conference: Integrating Social Interaction, Sacred Space and Beauty in the 21st Century, an annual conference for city officials, planners, builders and architects. Jim previously led the Twenty-Something Fellowship and cofounded The Warehouse Service at Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena. He has served as adjunct professor at Azusa Pacific University and was cofounder of the Renaissance Project Skateboard Company.” “Book Description: Feeling caught between the traditional church and the emerging church? Discover a third way: deep church. … Unfortunately church in our postmodern era has been marked by a certain shallowness. Emerging authors, fed up with contemporary pragmatism, have offered alternative visions for twenty-first-century Christianity. Traditionalist churches have reacted negatively, at times defensively.” 18
  19. 19.   Cont. “Jim Belcher knows what it's like to be part of both of these worlds. In the 1990s he was among the pioneers of what was then called Gen X ministry, hanging out with creative innovators like Rob Bell, Mark Oestreicher and Mark Driscoll. But he also has maintained ties to traditionalist circles, planting a church in the Presbyterian Church of America. In Deep Church, Belcher brings the best insights of all sides to forge a third way between emerging and traditional. “In a fair and evenhanded way, Belcher explores the proposals of such emerging church leaders as Tony Jones, Brian McLaren and Doug Pagitt. He offers measured appreciation and affirmation as well as balanced critique. Moving beyond reaction, Belcher provides constructive models from his own church planting experience and paints a picture of what this alternate, deep church looks like--a missional church committed to both tradition and culture, valuing innovation in worship, arts and community but also creeds and confessions. If you've felt stuck between two extremes, you can find a home here. Plumb the depths of Christianity in a way that neither rejects our postmodern context nor capitulates to it.” ( 19
  20. 20.   Reviews: “I found this book as a nice start to the discussion but still flawed. It does well at unpacking and clarifying what the emergent church is. The emergent church is not boxed in by a simple definition. [The book however] does simply box in the traditional church.” (Daniel Kulp) “Some will say that the emerging church proponents lose in this book. I'd argue that the real loser's are Anabaptists who get several cheap shots taken throughout the book.” (Jason A. Evans)  “...if you're earnestly going through the type of struggle that would prompt you to soak up this book, it's time to stop floundering about and simply come home to the Catholic Church.” (Dwight) 20
  21. 21.   “Hegelian Dialectics are most used by the emergent church and this [book] is no different. The whole ideal of mixing two opposing viewpoints is the worst compromise. … If you see the titles of every review--quite a few mention „Deep‟. This again is the same exact ideology that sees synthesis between two opposing viewpoints with which I will end with a [scripture] passage.” “2 Co 6:14-17 „Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.‟” ( 21
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  23. 23.  “Michael Frost (1961 - ) is an internationally recognized missiologist and one of the leading voices in the missional church movement. His books are required reading in colleges and seminaries around the world and he is much sought after as an international conference speaker. … He is the author or editor of ten popular Christian books, … These books explore a missiological framework for the church in the postmodern era.” (  “Alan Hirsch is the founding director of Forge Mission Training Network. Currently he co-leads Future Travelers, an innovative learning program helping megachurches become missional movements. Known for his innovative approach to mission, Alan is considered to be a thought-leader and key mission strategist for churches across the Western world. … He is also adjunct professor at Fuller Seminary, George Fox Seminary, among others, and he lectures frequently throughout Australia, Europe, and the United States.” ( 23
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  25. 25.   Book description: “ReJesus is intended as a call to Re-Jesus the church by placing Jesus back at the center. The authors claim the book intends to move toward an „absolute recovery of the centrality of the person of Jesus in defining who we are as well as what we do‟ (p.8) and call upon their readers to „recalibrate the church around the person of Jesus rather than around marketing ploys developed for a shallow consumeristic age‟ (p.189).” Book Review: “The authors assert the formula that Christology determines missiology which in turn determines ecclesiology, yet the discerning reader is left wanting more in each of the three categories - especially Christology. The authors do better at challenging and even deconstructing traditional views of Jesus (i.e. through art) than of reconstructing Jesus as the so-called Wild Messiah. ( 25
  26. 26.  Book Review: “Amongst pan-evangelicals nowadays, there‟s a lot of talk . . . talk . . . talk . . . going on about „Jesus‟. . . . But my concern is that Jesus talk may not be all it‟s cracked up to be, and that because it appears to deemphasize Jesus to be, as Peter confessed Him, „the Christ the Son of the living God‟ (Matthew 16:16), it will lead to nowhere in the end. In fact, the authors seem to infer that understanding Jesus to be the Lord Jesus Christ is a metaphysical imposition by the church upon the primitive but authentic Jesus. This is what emergents believe has accumulated around Jesus, what they call the Jesus myth. … In their view, the church must be „rejesused,‟ or to use a computer metaphor, be „rebooted,‟ so that a new kind of Christianity can emerge.” ) 26
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  29. 29.  “Gabe Lyons is … founder of Q (, a learning community that seeks to promote the common good. He is also coauthor of Unchristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks About Christianity and Why It Matters, a bestselling book based on original research that revealed the pervasiveness of pop culture's negative perceptions of Christians. As a respected voice for a new generation of Christians, he has been interviewed by CNN, The New York Times, Newsweek, Fox News, USA Today, and countless other media outlets. (  Book Description: “Turn on a cable news show or pick up any news magazine, and you get the impression that Christian America is on its last leg. The once dominant faith is now facing rapidly declining church attendance, waning political influence, and an abysmal public perception. More than 76% of Americans self-identify as Christians, but many today are ashamed to carry the label.” (cont.) 29
  30. 30.  “While many Christians are bemoaning their faith‟s decline, Gabe Lyons is optimistic that Christianity‟s best days are yet to come. In the wake of the stunning research from his bestselling book, unChristian, which revealed the growing disenchantment among young generations for Christians, Lyons has witnessed the beginnings of a new iteration of the faith. … Lyons exposes a whole movement of Christians— Evangelicals, Mainline, Protestants, Orthodox, Pentecostals, and others—who desire to be a force for restoration even as they proclaim the Christian Gospel. They want the label Christian to mean something good, intelligent, authentic, and beautiful.” ( books&ie=UTF8&qid=1349481206&sr=11&keywords=the+next+christians+the+good +new+about+the+end+of+christian+america#_)  Book Review: “In The Next Christians, Gabe sets forth quite clearly what he and the next Christians truly believe. … Just who is this new generation of Christians? What do they believe? What does Gabe Lyons believe, for that matter?” (cont.) 30
  31. 31.     “Biblical Interpretation...  the literal, historical, grammatical hermeneutic is outdated (135)  the next Christians „immerse themselves in Scripture in a way that differs from the practice of recent generations‟ (135)  criticizes Christians who take literally Jesus‟ command to „preach the Gospel to all nations‟ (37)” “Biblical Application…  the Bible isn‟t an ethics manual (135)  the next Christians „don‟t encumber themselves with specific, and often legalistic do‟s and don‟ts‟ (136)” “Biblical Prophecy…  end-times prophecy is irrelevant for the next Christians (197)” “Doctrine…  doctrine is „out-dated and stuffy‟ (26)  being doctrinally sound is less important than living out one‟s commitment in the way of Jesus (180-81)  re-interprets doctrine that doesn‟t connect with post-moderns (52)…” (cont.) 31
  32. 32.   “Sin…  God‟s goodness emanates from non-Christians (100)  non-Christians are inherently good (196)  calling people sinners is judgmental (52)” “Evangelism…  preaching the Gospel is unloving (37)  evangelism is not the most important interaction Christians should have with the world (37, 39, 47, 53, 97)  preaching the Gospel makes people into commodities to be gained (196)  Jesus‟ command to „go and preach‟ isn‟t a compelling enough mission (51)  the traditional view of the Gospel has stained Christianity and is a false representation of the true Gospel (166, 181)  creating a culture of beauty is preferred to preaching the Gospel (99, 108)  the Gospel is about restoring community to its original place in culture (150).” (cont.) 32
  33. 33.     “The Atonement…  the atonement of Christ is neither the end nor the goal of the Christian‟s faith (53)” “Non-Christian Faiths…  enthusiastic about inter-religious dialogue (67, 81)” “Spiritual Disciplines…  silence and solitude are as likely to transform into Christlikeness as are prayer and Bible study (134)” “Recommended Reading…  Richard Foster, Phyllis Tickle, Dallas Willard, Brennan Manning, Scot McKnight (53, 133).” ( 33
  34. 34.  “This book was a real Hate-Love relationship for me. . . . Lyons affirmed that there is a growing disdain for Christianity and the church. What I failed to grasp at the initial stages, however, was that Lyons was building a foundation to introduce a counter culture similar to the original intent of Christianity (but from which Christianity has moved throughout the years.) . . . . While I have always stated that we need to allow the sacred to invade and influence the secular, what is seen here is a „blurring of the lines‟ in which one can hardly tell the difference (if there is, in fact, such).” ( /pd/529840 )  “In summary, I feel this book is one more tome depicting either the rejection of biblical Christianity or the complete misunderstanding of biblical Christianity. My conclusion is that this book has little value to true believers other than to further identify a generation that has been „lost‟ by inaccurate presentation of the gospel. … As a result this book is one more argument from the emergent and or emerging „church.‟ I think to say that this movement is equal to the great reformation is extremely inaccurate.” ( 34
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  36. 36. Erwin Raphael McManus serves as Lead Pastor of Mosaic, a uniquely innovative and international congregation in Los Angeles, California. A national and international strategist and speaker on culture, change, creativity and leadership, Erwin also serves as Distinguished Lecturer and Futurist for Bethel Theological Seminary. 36
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  38. 38.   Book Description: “The alarm sounds. Your feet hit the floor and carry you into another day. But what does that day hold for you? Will you be punching your card at work, catching up on TV at home, and crashing into bed before you rinse and repeat the next day? Or will you dare to dig deep and discover the incredible potential lying dormant within us all?” Editorial Review: “Emergent church pastor McManus (Soul Cravings) encourages readers to dream wide awake—in other words, to live their dreams. … There's nothing new here, and McManus relies on clichés, though he writes simply and with energy. Some readers, though, may be more comfortable with McManus's pop psychology approach to the scriptures, where Daniel becomes the poster child for adaptability, Jesus represents a focused life and Isaiah's prophetic, Arise, shine; for your light has come becomes a call to [live] up to your potential.” ( 6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1349628744&sr=1-6) 38
  39. 39.    “The main problem with Wide Awake is that it bounces back and forth between pastoral counseling and motivational lingo that borders on Gnosticism (your power is within, etc.). The problem McManus‟ readers are dealing with is not sin and depravity. In fact, McManus thinks the church talks too much about sin and guilt (143). The main problem is unfulfillment and sadness (22, 28). Salvation and satisfaction are found in your living out your story (160). . . .” “The „dreams‟ that McManus wants to awaken within us are not grounded in anything other than our own minds. The dreams we have are of „a life, a world, a future so beautiful that it takes your breath away‟ (116). Yes. Our vision of the coming Kingdom should inform our dreams for today, but McManus never links our dreams to the Kingdom of God. Readers will pour whatever meaning they want into his vague category of „dreams‟ and „a beautiful future.‟” “My advice to pastors and church leaders? Skip Wide Awake. If you're looking for motivational thoughts to push you ahead in the direction you already want to go, then Wide Awake will do the trick. If you're looking for challenging biblical teaching that will ground your dreams in Kingdom reality, you'll have to look elsewhere.” ( 39
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  42. 42.   “The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath, of course would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice, but God being removed they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on the sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure. “ (Battle Creek Letters, pp. 79-81) 42