The Wanderer

As I walked through the wilderness of this world …

Celebrity Christianity

with 5 comments

Written by Jeremy Walker

Wednesday 7 October 2009 at 15:15

Posted in While wandering . . .

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  1. What are your thoughts of Modern reformed churches?

    Jade

    Saturday 10 October 2009 at 19:31

    • Can you give me a definition of what you mean by “modern reformed churches”? I still may not be able to answer your question, but at least I will have a better idea why not!

      Jeremy Walker

      Saturday 10 October 2009 at 20:31

      • Well, I actually wanted to ask you about that. It seems that word “modern churches” varies with folks. But I think of “modern churches” as those who take a contemporary approach to worship … and even that seems to vary between folks in the reformed circles. But why don’t we start with how you define the modern church. It seems there seems to be this cry for relevancy (in our current culture) among reformed baptist circles. I have a concern for that. Particularly when they use verses “to be all things to all men” as a prescription to worship. I just think that’s a step toward contemporary worship as found in the mega-churches.

        Do you think reformed baptist are failing to reach the lost today as some are saying?

        Jade

        Saturday 10 October 2009 at 20:41

        • Hello, Jade –

          Without wishing to be pedantic, we are all modern churches. I have been asked to preach at a small conference next year on “Should we relate to a 21st century world?” I think the title is deliberately provocative: how can we not! We are by virtue of our existence relating (even seeking to isolate ourselves is a way of relating). The main main question is how we are relating and in what way?

          To answer your questions would take articles rather than comments, and I am not in a position to do that. Suffice it to say for now that the truth is relevant, and it ought to be delivered in a way that demonstrates its abiding relevance to sinners like us. I think that the obsession with “worship” misses the point, not least because our whole time gathered as a church in the presence of God is worship in a particular sense, and I think it is too easy to get bogged down in the issue of sung worship.

          At the same time, I do think that there is a danger of a bunker mentality developing, and that Reformed Baptists, in common with all God’s people, must continue to take pains to make Christ known by all legitimate means. I may disagree with some of the answers bandied around to the questions about our willingness and ability to reach the lost and teach the reached, but I do not think that we can therefore dismiss all the questions.

          At the root of many of these matters lies our conviction about God’s sovereign power to bless his appointed means to accomplish his stated and secret ends. We are called to faithfulness, even while we long for that to be allied with greater fruitfulness.

          I know that I am barely hinting at half-answers to your questions, but I hope that at least points you in the directions I would be inclined to go.

          Jeremy Walker

          Monday 9 November 2009 at 16:17

        • Hi Jeremy,

          Thanks for replying! I understand this isn’t a question that can easily be answered.

          When I had stated “modern church” … I was referring more to the movement … not to the century or some dated movement like what the amish would do. The “modern church” I was referring to was in reference to churches taking on contemporary styles of worship (e.g. emergent movement) with the motive to reach the 21st Century. There’s been cases where folks think we should ditch 17th century reformed materials because it only addresses folks in the 17th century and should come up with new material that addresses folks in the 21st Century. Now I agree to the extent that the material is written in the old english language that most common folks these days are unable to understand (as those who impose on using only the KJV), and to that end, the language might need to be updated. But the content itself addresses the same old problems of human nature. As far as the depravity of human nature, there’s nothing new under the sun. So why do people insist that to address the of saving of souls needs to be “updated”, if it’s been the same problem since Adam’s fall?

          Also, I’m concern with the need to be “innovative” to reach the lost. I am not at all against seeking opportunities to reach the lost. By all means we should. But to candy coat the message so that it’s “palatable” to the 21st century man, through the type of music and message he prefers to listen to is just downright wrong. We fail to be salt to the earth by then. I found it troubling when a reformed baptist minister, in addressing how reformed baptists should conduct their worship (and with the motivation to reach 21st century men), that it should be govern by the principle, “to be all things to all men”. Granted this is Scriptural, it was written for a particular context. But he applied it for all things and a rule of life for all Christians, including how the corporate worship of God should be conducted. From what can I see, to apply that principle for ALL THINGS (including the worship of God) is clearly a step into liberalism! So I get very skeptical when folks address that churches need to some how “reinvent” themselves and adjust to the needs of all men, to reach the 21st Century world.

          Jade

          Saturday 14 November 2009 at 16:34


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