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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

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  • « The Rebuilding of the Temple | Main | The truth of the gospel »

    What's Wrong With This Picture?

    I have read in several places that Emerging Churches are those that define themselves as:
    1. Who take the life of Jesus as a model way to live
    2. Who transform the secular realm
    3. As they live highly communal lives.
    Because of these three activities, emerging churches
    4. Welcome those who are outside
    5. Share generously
    6. Participate
    7. Create
    8. Lead without control and
    9. Function together in spiritual activities.
    Boiling it down to one sentence: Emerging Churches are...communities who practice the way of Jesus within postmodern cultures.

    Comment: While on the surface many of these answers may seem commendable but please notice that the central theme of all of the above are not about what Christ has done for us, but what we do for him. Sadly we find this type of graceless moralism throughout their writings, not as peripheral but (unfortunately) as the centerpiece of their faith. Jesus is here portrayed as Lord but not Savior.

    Posted by John on August 28, 2008 02:04 PM

    Comments

    Here is what I have to say about that. I don't see any loopholes in these verses, do you? I mean, there isn't any room for outsiders!! :):::>

    Joh 12:20 Now among those who went up to worship at the feast were some Greeks.
    Joh 12:21 So these came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and asked him, "Sir, we wish to see Jesus."
    Joh 12:22 Philip went and told Andrew; Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus.
    Joh 12:23 And Jesus answered them, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
    Joh 12:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
    Joh 12:25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.
    Joh 12:26 If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.
    Joh 12:27 "Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? But for this purpose I have come to this hour.
    Joh 12:28 Father, glorify your name." Then a voice came from heaven: "I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again."
    Joh 12:29 The crowd that stood there and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, "An angel has spoken to him."
    Joh 12:30 Jesus answered, "This voice has come for your sake, not mine.
    Joh 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out.
    Joh 12:32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself."

    Isn't this just liberalism rehashed?

    "Jesus is here portrayed as Lord but not Savior."

    According to Luther, to confess Christ as Lord means to confess him as Savior:

    "'And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord...' What does this mean? --Answer. I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary, is my Lord, who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, purchased and won [delivered] me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil, not with gold or silver, but with His holy, precious blood and with His innocent suffering and death, in order that I may be [wholly] His own, and live under Him in His kingdom, and serve Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and blessedness, even as He is risen from the dead, lives and reigns to all eternity."
    http://www.bookofconcord.org/smallcatechism.html

    DRB

    We agree with you. It is impossible to affirm Christ as Lord and not Savior.

    What is meant by the post is that the emerging church believes in forming communities around living like Jesus without understanding they first need Him as a Savior. Most of these groups reject substitutionary atonement and will not acknowledge that they justly deserve the wrath of God save for Christ's mercy alone. God's wrath and the need for Christ as Savior have dissapeared from their thoughts and vocabulary. In other words, orthopraxy trumps orthodoxy. What matters in their view is how you live, not what you believe.

    However, true Christianity sees that we have no hope save in the mercy of Christ alone and this will lead to orthopraxy. We do not do good works in order to be saved but because we are saved. You cannot (we agree) have Lord without savior but the emerging church tends to bifurcate these ideas.

    Hope this brings more clarity to the subject.
    J

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