Sunday, July 01, 2012

Fearsome Tycoon on "The Great Emergence"

Funny enough to be worth replicating in its entirety.  Plus I've linked to fascinating comments or amusing comments from the BHT from years ago that don't exist any longer.

http://boarsheadtavern.com/2012/07/01/the-great-emergence/



Here are my running thoughts:


1. Any time you talk about what’s happening in “the Church,” and you’re talking about some sliver of Western Protestantism, you are being historically, geographically, and culturally unaware. Most Christians are Catholic. Whatever you think about Catholicism, that’s a numerical fact. Period. Are you changing Catholicism? If the answer is “no,” you’re not a major movement in “the Church.”


2. The Emergent Church is an insignificant movement. Let’s put it this way–Martin Luther changed pretty much everything. To belong to a church in the 21st century is still, to this day, to belong to an organization decisively shaped by the ideas of Luther, whether acceptance, rejection or modification of them. Same with Gregory. You can’t be a Christian today without being fundamentally affected by Gregory’s assertions of papal supremacy, whether you are Catholic, Orthodox, Baptist, or Lutheran. I’m just not seeing that kind of effect happening due to the Emergent movement, because I don’t see them making some kind of fundamentally earth-shaking assertion that hasn’t been made already.


3. There is no such thing as “post-Protestant.” If you are Protestant, the only way to stop being Protestant is to join a communion that either (a) predates the Reformation, (b) split off from a pre-Reformation communion, or (c) isn’t recognizably Christian. If neither (a) nor (b) nor (c) hold, you are a Protestant, like it or not. So you read Aquinas and think he’s smart. BFD, so did John Calvin. Do you think the pope is infallible? No? Hi, you’re a Protestant, welcome to the club you never left.


4. “Gettiing rid of Christian exclusivism” is not new. It’s not unique. It’s called “liberal Protestantism” and is old, boring, and busted. It’s got a really short organizational half-life because people stop waking up early and donating money to a church body if there’s no eternal significance to anything.


5. No one is impressed by you reclaiming bits of liturgy from the 4th century. The vast majority of practicing Christians already do that. Let me bring you down to earth, Emergents. There are about 2,265 million Christians. Over half of them are Catholic. Add in the Orthodox, and you’re up to 62%. Throw in the Lutherans and Anglicans for good measure, and now we’re up to around 70% of Christianity. Really, truly, we think it’s nice that you’ve discovered some value in the heritage your Calvinist and Anabaptist forebears threw out. But the Emergent discovery of the Kyrie is no more revolutionary than some guy in Idaho discovering that rice can be cooked and eaten.


UPDATE:
Good thing I included the body of the post here because it looks like the Boar's Head Tavern has experienced another one of its semi-annual site crashes!

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Let me bring you down to earth, Emergents. There are about 2,265 million Christians. Over half of them are Catholic. Add in the Orthodox, and you’re up to 62%. Throw in the Lutherans and Anglicans for good measure, and now we’re up to around 70% of Christianity.

No skubalon?

70% of ALL Christians hail from the historic Liturgical Churches?

Then how did "Christian" without any adjective modifiers come to mean the Jack Chick types and Jack Chick types alone?

Headless Unicorn Guy

Wenatchee the Hatchet said...

nerd thing to ask but have you ever posted a comment as Headless Unicron Guy?

Anonymous said...

FYI, HUG features pretty prominently on like-minded blog's comment sections.