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End of the emerging church?

An article out of Christianity Today has been stirring some buzz – R.I.P. Emerging Church

Supposedly Dan Kimball, Erwin McManus, and Scot McKnight are starting up a new missional network that will have it’s orthodox theological foundation based on the Lausanne Covenant in an attempt to get away from the emerging/emergent labels.

It’s amazing how in a world that disdains labels how many labels we keep coming up with.  

From Tom Sine’s Emerging, Missional, Mosaic, and Monastic;

to Mark Driscoll’s Reformed/Relevants, Reconstructionists, and Revisionists;

to Wess Daniels’ Deconstructionist, Pre-modernist/Augustinian, Emerging Peace Church/Open Anabaptist, and Foundationalists;

to Scot Mcknight’s Prophetic, Postmodern, Praxis Driven, Post Evangelical, and Political;

to Darrin Patrick’s Emerging Conversational, Emerging Attractional, and Emerging Incarnational…

not to mention other labels/streams like catholic, orthodox, purpose-driven, simple, neo and non-reformed, etc, etc, etc.

It seems every now and a group of us have a need to repackage the thing all over again… and I think we need to, because terms do get old, and sometimes words are necessary to bring greater clarity.  However, I think we need to just as much reclaim the labels behind the great movements of the church throughout history as well, and not simply abandon them.  

Can’t wait to hear what the latest one will be called…

{ 2 comments… add one }

  • Deana September 23, 2008, 5:17 pm


    you’ve hooked me in…i’m about to talk “church”. which you should know by now is my FAVORITE topic.

    The other day we were flipping channels looking for Opera music for Max. I stopped on a public radio station that was talking about the Pentecostal Church. This is the church that Steve and I both grew up in, and got “kicked” out of. But while listening to this historian speak of the beginnings of the Pentecostal church, it stirred up emotions in me, of why I did love the church.

    And then I got mad. Because LABELS have muddied up the true intentions of the church. I was taught that if, as a believer, you weren’t pentecostal, you weren’t REALLY a Christian. If you were baptist you believed one thing, methodists another, Catholics…well they weren’t really Christian, they were Catholic. Evangelicals were our cousins, and fundamentalists well…they were the crazies. And in the end…they were just my brothers and sisters. They all believed in God with the same passion I did.

    Why can’t we just be believers? Why can’t we just love God, follow Jesus, and do what the Bible says we should?

  • Lon September 24, 2008, 12:56 am

    Well said Deana!! and surprised you chimed in on this one!

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