Sunday, May 06, 2007

travel report part II & 1/2

(some delayed live blogging for G13)

The official end of the "God For People Who Hate Church" conference was this morning at The Gathering's Sunday am worship service. Tony Jones was guest speaker.

I think Tony is some kind of big wig in the emergent circles. I think he runs "emergent village" web site or something.

This guy was right on and very easy to follow and understand without being heady or tainted with arrogance. I greatly appreciate that, being that I never understood exactly what emergent was (much less follow intellectual chatter). But finally, I think I do now.

As per Tony:

Our faith in the CEO really is a 'paradox'. Example, people training in science to be physicists are taught that electrons are either a) a particle or b) a wave. But way down the line they are taught that electrons are BOTH particles AND electrons. "Get over it" is applied to learning the 'both' part as opposed to hanging on to their old either/or teaching.

This parallels our faith. Examples:
1) "I believe. Help my unbelief" (Mark 9)
2) Jesus: a man? or the CEO?
3) The trinity: Three? One?

and etc.

Also, as I simplified the definition of "emergent" in my head:

emergent = open ended or perhaps open source. Like wikipedia. Or perhaps, how many sermons do you hear preached that are ended with an open questions such as "what do you think/have to add?" Cults, D. Koresh, and my former host church in the fair mother city never did that. A person's sermon was the dictatorial "end all". Period. Emergent seems to say that it's OK to not have all the answers.

Now I see why a lot of hard core church people hate emergent. It doesn't have all the answers. And it's OK about that.

But really...who does have all the answers?


Currently, I'm spending the lazy Sunday afternoon in Beverly with Dr. James and wife. More to report later, I'm sure.

Hope to report on my time with the why man (who hosted the conference) and the MANY folks I met.

Thanks for reading and staying in touch.


Anonymous said...

"have all the answers" = Modern

"picking apart all the answers with (usually really good) questons" = Post Modern.

Not that these labels overlay yours perfectly, but the general gist is the same and may expand the language used to describe these ideas a bit.


Agent X

g13 said...

thanks for the update. i've heard tony speak on similar topics before. i don't care what God says about that guy, he's alright.

IZenBet said...

just stopped by to say hi. don't you love the word paradox and what it means? its so cool to have a word you either let confuse one for life or " get over it"

carl said...

hello agent b,

I was encouraged and inspired as I heard your story friday night. Thanks for your online note-taking as well.

John Smulo said...

Loved meeting you in person. I think it's going to take me most of next week to process everything that happened!

Agent B said...

Enjoyed meeting all of you, new and "old".

Keep in touch.

Jason & Nicole said...

Thanks for the updates and definition of emergent. That's the best I've read.

I preached a sermon at a retirement community a few weeks ago. I usually try "new" stuff like leaving things fairly open-ended, yet still speak from conviction. I shared some thoughts about Ecclesiastes and said I don't like translations that say "meaningless" or "pointless". One man told me afterwards that maybe it should be "enigma".

No one has the corner market on truth and God is an enigma. He is the Both/And.