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Christine Pack

Hmmmm, so this explains why I was drawn to the emergent church in the beginning! It was so close to what I had experienced in the New Age and as a Gen X-er, and there was certainly no pesky exclusivity to have to deal with (as in, we approach God ONLY through the blood of Christ and no other way).

Except that, when I actually got SAVED my eyes were opened to the emptiness of clever man-made ideas and schemes about how to approach God. (There's a name for that in the Bible...it's called "divination")

Deuteronomy 12:30-31
"Be careful not to be ensnared by inquiring about their gods, saying, "How do these nations serve their gods? We will do the same." You must not worship the LORD your God in their way, because in worshiping their gods, they do all kinds of detestable things the LORD hates."

PaulDz

really? Hard to swallow all of that extreme stuff you are selling...wow. I applaud your desire to be Biblical but am amazed at your lack of respect for folks who seem to be godly and desirous of reaching the world for Jesus.

jay ott

Chris,

Here's a serious question. I suppose I could go look it up myself, but other readers might also want to know.

My question is, did the pracitice of mysticism produce, "Evangelicals and [Roman] Catholics Together" or did ECT produce the pracitice of mysticism within evangelicalism?

Also, doesn't the influence of the so-called "Charismatic Renewal, neo-Pentecostalism, and Jesus Movements" and perhaps even Mariology fit into this somehow?

If so, could you untangle this?

Diana Lovegrove

Roger Oakland in his book Faith Undone, draws a parallel with the dark ages. He makes the point that during those times when people did not have access to the Word of God, they needed to create spiritual experiences with God to compensate. So today, the lack of focus, and thus feeding, on the Word of God leads people to seek something to compensate for this loss - the spiritual experiences of those in the dark ages.

Chris Rosebrough (@PirateChristian)

PaulDz,

Why should I praise these people who have 'a godly desire to reach the world for Jesus' IF they're not actually reaching people with the Biblical Gospel but are instead promoting and teaching false doctrine and Roman Catholic myths?

God NEVER uses false doctrine, false spiritualities, mythologies and lies to reach people with the truth.

Call me old school but I actually believe the Bible when it says that those teaching a false gospel are anathama.

Chris Rosebrough (@PirateChristian)

Jay,

I actually do not know the answer to your question and am not sure how I could find out.

Christine Pack

Jay - I firmly believe that ECT flowed out of evangelicals being convinced that catholic monasticism was okay and even good to do. How did this happen? I think it was mainly through Richard Foster's book Celebration of Disciplines, which heavily promotes catholic monasticism. Astonishingly, this book is required reading in many seminaries. My own pastor was required to read this and he went to a conservative seminary.

But, it took time from the point that this very popular book began to be taught in seminaries for the effects of that to be felt at the church level.

So what happened was this: Once you had an (1) entire generation of church leaders loving and being influenced by this book and (2) them then bringing this teaching into their own churches, there was a massive explosion of interest in these mystical practices. This was because (1) the mystical practices themselves were clothed in Christian vernacular and (2) the pastors and church leaders were saying it was all okay. Both of these things worked in tandem to bring everybody's guard down.

And all of this came together rather precisely about the time there was an entire group of people coming of age having been "discipled" in seeker sensitive churches, with their de-emphasis on teaching sound doctrine and over-emphasis on being culturally relevant so they could reach out to seekers. The perfect storm, so to speak, but in the worst possible way.

And, the mystical experiences themselves give a person a profound sense of one-ness and interconnectedness that "feel" counter to the exclusivity of the gospel. Can you see how you a person could be doing the mystical stuff and then say, "hey, what's wrong with the catholics? my neighbor's a catholic, he's such a nice guy, and he talks about Jesus and goes to church." The next thing you know, you've got ECT and The Manhattan Declaration and all sorts of things you'd never expect to see coming from out of the evangelical camp.

www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawmnAs4OMLlQ0rfiQH5S67dTpZyl_Z5FU24

You asked about Luther and mediative practices on your show today. You asked why Luther who spent so much of his life in the monastary engaged in meditation on Scripture did not teach his disciples to do likewise. In fact he did. Luther's letter on prayer to his Barber Peter teaches a meatod of prayerful meditation and reflection on Scripture. Also one of Luther's Christmas sermons teaches about meditatin on the Natviy. Then there is Luther's famous teaching that a theologian is made by Oratio, Meditatio and t

www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawmnAs4OMLlQ0rfiQH5S67dTpZyl_Z5FU24

oratio, meditaio and tentato. Now Luther would have critiqued the lexio tradition and the ladder analogy is way over the top. But he did not throw the baby of Biblical mediation out with the monastic bathwater. So to answer your question Luther did in fact teach his followers a meathod of biblical meditation.

Account Deleted

One really important thing to realise is that this is what Purpose Driven churches have been teaching all along. They have been about building a feeling of connection and rightness with God, ignoring the teachings of the actual revelation of God. This Contemplative Mysticism fits that perfectly, it is the "grown up's version" of the "teenage" Cross-less Christianity (this title seems to be more apt than Christ-less Christianity) that was used so well in their earlier years.

Alan

Chris,

As you've stated before, we have a Christless Christianity where Christ and His Word are no longer sufficient. So people must turn to some experience when genuine faith is gone. It may be more exciting music, a more interesting church building, or some "new" form of prayer that guarantees a more "exciting" experience. Once that wears off, there will always be the next "new" thing. It is experience without genuine faith, which is basically idolatry.

BlendahTom

Reminds me of what was going on in the Church of Colossae .. lot's of higher spiritual stuff.. incredible that we are still falling into these traps 2000 years later :(

Jim

Bull's Eye Chris!

Here's another real life example:

Virginia Baptists Host Anglican Emergents at Church Growth Conference

Monique

before I came to Jesus, I was standing outside the"window of new age philosophy" looking in. What I learned about the new age movement was they were discovering very profound truths that lead them to a "spiritual experience", Just like we experience, when we receive a revelation from the Word of God. Their downfall is that they leave God out of the equation.
The new age experience is like a drug addiction. Followers flock from one profound truth to another looking for their spiritual high only to feel empty when the "high" subsides. You can see why the new age followers garnered a reputation for being "flakey"
When I came to Christ I was absolutely shocked at how many "Christian churches" were entrench in the new age, trodden path. They flock to biblical truths and leave Christ out of the equation, hijacking profound truths and using them to suit themselves.
But how do Gospel based christian combat this problem? Followers of this alternate form of Christianity never accepted Christ on his terms in the first place and too many well intentioned Christians allowed compromising, PC christians to come in through the back door.
Drug addicts are very aware they have a drug problem, but don't care when they are looking for their next fix. "new age Christians" aren't even aware they have a problem, and more often than not, are offended at such a thought...
Monique

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