Emergent Church Parents Ask, What Should We Teach Our Children?

The web article below discusses a recent Washington, D.C., conference where participants searched for a way to pass on their liberal version of the faith, often called the emergent church, to their children.

Today’s young parents were brought up in Sunday schools teaching about sin and that Jesus died because they were so bad.  In its way, it is a story not so difficult to tell.

But, if the story is Jesus accepts everyone and sin and hell are not so important, what do you talk about for the rest of the hour?  That is to say, parents know what they do not believe, it’s what their parents believed.  Now, they have children themselves and cannot explain how they got to where they are.

Apparently, the conference did not come up with an answer–but reaffirmed an answer is needed.  Liberal churches, like the conservative Southern Baptist Convention, are not retaining young people.

One of the presenters said that politicians have learned the language of preachers and people are associating with “tribes” accordingly, replacing the church.  I would explain it as seeing young social conservatives sitting at one table in Starbucks on a Sunday morning discussing how gays should not be allowed to marry.

At another table, young liberals are discussing the injustice of gays not being able to marry.  Neither group heads off to their respective churches because they would hear the same thing there.

The answer of what to teach young people and how to keep the faith  relevant may become apparent in time.  It’s not apparent yet.



37 Responses

  1. entech

    Do not not do to any one anything that you would find hateful if done to you.
    The rest is commentary.

  2. Michael Ross

    I believe the parent’s church is the Church of Laodicea, the “lukewarm” church. The emergent church is an apostate church. Neither church have had the answers that young people looking for.

    1. entech

      Henry I think you have misled me a little in the past, you said you didn’t keep a database of all this stuff, or perhaps you have total recall. Blessed (or would that be cursed) with an eidetic memory.
      Not quite on topic (only my opinion) but I guess closer than a lot. Wonder why you never found the need to comment at the time? Just asking.

        1. entech

          OK, day or two apart but near enough. Does this mean you have the photographic memory? Or just better at checking old posts, couple of time I have spent too long checking and just give up, still we none trinitarians are notorious for giving up.
          But we diverge I am surprised no one (except Jon and, of course, he is an atheist and so doesn’t count) has commented on what the good Rabbi had to say.

  3. Wanna B Sure

    There is a term;”The Conservative Reformation”. The title has nothing to do with being conservative, or the Reformation. In context, “conservative” means stagnation, and “reformation” represents the radical.
    This topic was presented at the recognized start of the liberal movement within Christianity in the very early 1900’s. Even at that time the dangers/hazards now self evident in the megas and emergents was observed. I do believe this “Conservative Reformation” would go a long way in providing a viable solution. When they tire of re-inventing the wheel, they may find it helpfull.
    The other alternative scares the hell out of me, (metaphorically speaking), and that would be that they over react and become more stridently conservative than anything ever seen before. This is when the “bombs, etc. he mentioned would come into play. Almost like a dry drunk, or an unhappy non-smoker. Irritating and insulting anyone who isn’t just like or as perfect as they are.
    By the terms they use, they are skirting on the edges, but nothing will come of it, because it is neither conservative, nor reformative.

  4. Henry

    Jon:“Neither group heads off to their respective churches because they would hear the same thing there.”

    My advice: Find a church that doesn’t engage in the endless “gay” discussion. This discussion is destroying churches. Presbyterians and some Lutherans have thought it good to engage in this discussion, thereby giving it legitimacy. They have suffered a very heavy toll. Just call it sin and move on.
    An endless discussion on why stealing should be accepted would have similar results.

    1. entech

      Interesting comment. I would have thought that the incessant hatred of fellow human beings, Gods creatures if you like, would be the cause of more damage than a little tolerance and love your neighbor (metaphorically speaking).

        1. entech

          There are none so blind as those that will not see. This is a frequent comment by Christians in their intense dislike of people that don’t accept their views, it is so obvious, they say, how can you not believe. Same with Henry here, if you don’t see the hatred you are not looking, when it was demonstrated, some guy murdered a while ago, you went to great lengths to divert it from being seen as a hate crime, a robbery gone wrong you said, in spite of all the evidence.
          Christian often , on this site, say why do Jon and his supporters hate Christians so much, incidence please criticism is not hatred, on the other hand Christians seem to be the best haters in the world – other people that claim to be Christian but not the “right kind”, homosexuals, Jews, atheists the list goes on.

    2. Henry 9:18 “My advice: Find a church that doesn’t engage in the endless “gay” discussion. This discussion is destroying churches.”

      Sounds identical to comments made during the civil rights period, “Why don’t the Negro people just be quiet. Let’s leave things as they are so we all get along.”

      1. Henry

        Jon, it should be a rather short discussion for a Christian. Homosexuality is sin. For those who insist on practicing it, is there repentence? If not, they are in conflict with the scriptures they supposedly embrace. It is no different than the unrepentent heterosexual who operates contrary to scripture. Again, the desire by some is to grant special status and rights to the sin of homosexuality.

        1. Henry 2:26 “..it should be a rather short discussion for a Christian. Homosexuality is sin.”

          Identical to the argument used for segregation, “Mixing of the races is sin.” Should have been a short discussion.

        2. Demosthenes

          “Homosexuality is sin. For those who insist on practicing it…” At this point I am wondering if you are implying those who are homosexual have a choice and are just deciding to be gay.

          Then I read:

          “unrepentant heterosexual who operates contrary to scripture.” Nope, you really do think homosexuals choose to be homosexuals and compare them to a heterosexual who choose not to repent. All choices.

          Henry….why do you think those who are homosexual choose to be so ? Last I looked it wasn’t a choice. I am curious to find out.

          1. Henry

            D-“why do you think those who are homosexual choose to be so ?”

            Lack of evidence. Contrary to the natural order as applied to either creation or especially evolution models.

          2. entech

            Jon 9:53 The normative approach come from Aquinas (and many others), derives from the science of Aristotle, why does a rock fall to the ground? Because that is its natural position, it wants to be close to the centre and as earth is the centre of creation that is where it wants to be. From here it is easy homosexuals are wrong because it is against the natural order, children are created by the sexual act therefore another use of sex is wrong – hence the furore over birth control. There was a church leader in the early days of America who said that immunization against smallpox should be banned, it was defying Gods will, it was not normal!!!!!
            It is normal to take a book that is basically thousands of years out of date and try to force everyone to live by it. Don’t do any research on Leprosy, just kill a couple of birds that is the normal way to fix it.
            Oh well of to my science class, great lessons on modern cosmology.

          3. entech 11:19 I’m relieved to learn Henry didn’t just pick the concept of natural order out of the sky–that it is based on the rock falling to the earth because that’s it natural home. It nails down the proof gays are not part of the “nautural order”. : )

            Henry, you need to come up with something better than the “natural order” card.

          4. entech

            Jon1:45 am Quite humorous, especially the words of the Keeper, ” Ms Martin said it was “lovely” to be able to cheer people up but emphasised that the penguins are not actually gay – they are just the best of friends.”.
            Makes one wonder how many fine churchgoers would say that, and if they would get away with it. They would probably be accepted, I mean the whole thing is some kind of pretend game anyway. Ted Haggard eat your heart out.

            But on the subject of hate, some good words are “God hates fags” WBC, “abomination with death penalty” Leviticus, “if you are not with me you are against me” Mathew.
            OK, WBC claim to be Christian, many would deny that they are, but they do have a point there are several places in ‘scripture’ that say Homosexuality is a sin and worse, it is hateful to God, it is an abomination in his eyes, so if you love God and listen to Mathew…There is no choice you MUST hate fags !!! if you want to be a Christian (think it probably applies to all followers of the one God). This is, of course, unless you want to pick and choose, which would make you kNOw (sic) better than the detested liberal and emergent churches and whichever of the others that suggest tolerance is possible, no better, still selective just more hypocritical.

          5. Henry

            Exageration and out of context. Thank you for the brief discussion.

            As far as the penguin being “gay”, not hardly. I would have thought the resident scientific atheist minds would have seen the errors in assumption by the reporter in regards to biology. The resident atheists who supposedly embrace science and logic quite happily continue the error and nurse it along.

          6. Henry

            Sorry, Jon. You are really far off. Keep reasoning. You’ll get it eventually. Perhaps study penguins a little bit. They are absolutely amazing creatures, wonderfully made.

            It amazes me you stumble all over yourself to cling to some beliefs not even based on nature, but rather the words of some reporter.

          7. Henry 4:08 “Natural Law? Of course, John Locke.”

            John Locke, and his version of Natural Law, would have supported gay marriage. I don’t see any way that can be in doubt.

          8. Henry

            Buggery was punishable by death in Locke’s country at that time. Do you have a reference for Locke endorsing homosexuality?

          9. Henry 1:36 “Buggery was punishable by death in Locke’s country at that time.”

            Correct me if I’m wrong, here, but “punishable by death” would imply a legal right, different from a natural right. A legal right is something granted by government, a natural right is one that is available without, or even in spite of, government.

            As cases go to court, and as States vote on gay marriage, I’m confident gay marriage will emerge as a natural right that cannot be taken away by government.

          10. Demosthenes

            That is very odd. I never heard or “natural order” in use with Evolution, ever. It is though hypocritical that you feel a certain way about homosexuality is choice based on evidence. Yet, you don’t apply this to all aspect of you life. This is obvious with you admission to having “faith”. Why do certain parts require evidence, while other parts only require faith? Who decides if you should require faith in one situation but require evidence in other.

          11. Henry

            D-“Why do certain parts require evidence, while other parts only require faith?”

            That actually is a pretty good question. The answer: I am holding the atheist to their standard they demand of others. We wouldn’t want the good atheist to be……hypocritical.

        3. Demosthenes

          You are then under the impression that “lack of evidence” is to be used as Evidence? Circular to say the least… I also wouldn’t expect an atheist to put words in your mouth nor be responsible for how you have faith. So please elaborate why in your own words.

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