Sell crazy someplace else; we're all stocked up here.
A well known acrostic is that of T.U.L.I.P., often referred to as the most beloved flower in the Lord's garden.
It refers to the "Five Points of Calvinism," which Spurgeon labeled a nickname for the Gospel.
But, were you aware of the new TULIP?
There is much discussion about the Emerging/Emergent church and what that entails and/or implies. Like most anything, there are some pros and cons, some good and some bad, some compliments and some criticisms.
This is a fun little whammy putting together some criticisms in another acrostic, the new TULIP.
Thanks to Steve Camp for
The Emerging T.U.L.I.P., pretending to be orthodox.
1. Total Ambiguity
Methodology over message
Truth is abstract; fluid, and liquid
Conversation over gospel proclamation
Ecumenism over doctrinal unity
Contantly inventing a new spiritual meta-narrative
2. Unconditional Pragmaticism
Seeker sensible and seeker sensitive
Whatever works—do it
Numbers justify everything
Felt need, culture-driven
3. Limited Theology
Doctrine diminished and not primary; it is the afterthought
Truth claims remain vague and undefined
No definitive agreed upon statement of faith
Very little biblical definition of ministry
Recommended reading lists of their networks remain liberal and pragmatic
4. Irresistible Contextualization
Truth must be adapted to and defined by culture
The audience, not the message, is sovereign
The focus is to be relevant and relativistic
Being missional is marked by methodological inroads, conversation, and cultural discernment of the times - not the proclamation of the gospel
Speak of the humanity of Christ in crude terms to make Jesus relatable over reverence of the transcendence of Christ
5. Postmodern Perverse Speech
Being known as the cussing pastor is good
Unwholesome talk is cultural not biblical
Coarse scatological speech is a matter of personal taste
It makes you cool to other Emerging/Emergents
If you challenge it, you are labeled as Victorian and out of date
This is an interesting take on the effects of postmodernism on the church, and I'm sure advocates thereof are not hearing such criticism for the first time.
It seems to me that postmodernism presents new challenges as well as new opportunities. As that's part of my dissertation research, I'll try to share some in this venue from time to time.
Personally, by way of preview, there is much to embrace with regard to postmodernism in what it is not. It is not modernism. The problem is that so much of our Christian worldview has been tainted by modernism that we tend to reject things because they're not modern, more so than because they're not Christian/biblical.
This is tantamount to the cry, "We've never done it that way before!" often heard in churches, a perspective we mock when we're not saying it.
The Emergent/Emerging church is one means of response to the changing trends in our world, but make no mistake ... your world has changed. The question is, do you need a new church? And, if so, what will it look like? What must change? What can never change?
Leaders of churches, in particular, must attempt to answer such questions. I love church history and love the good ol' days, but they're never coming back (if they ever were).
More to come ...