Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 2:03 pm
Time Magazine created a list of 10 new ideas that are impacting the world right now and #3 on their list – incredibly – is an old but new movement called Calvinism or “New Calvinism.” Listed as some of the movers behind this new movement are John Piper from Minneapolis, my neighbor Mark Driscoll from Seattle, and Al Mohler. I find it encouraging and phenomenal that this was on the list but think we’re missing something if we think the Holy Spirit is working exclusively through the “new Calvinists.” Despite our cynicism and reports of the collapse of the evangelical church, the Holy Spirit is working…
Mark – on his Resurgence blog – listed the distinctions between Old and New Calvinism. He cites four main differences:
- Old Calvinism was fundamental or liberal and separated from or syncretized with culture. New Calvinism is missional and seeks to create and redeem culture.
- Old Calvinism fled from the cities. New Calvinism is flooding into cities.
- Old Calvinism was cessationistic and fearful of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. New Calvinism is continuationist and joyful in the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.
- Old Calvinism was fearful and suspicious of other Christians and burned bridges. New Calvinism loves all Christians and builds bridges between them.
While I personally roll with the Covenant denomination, I am advocating that we never be an island to ourselves. I spent most of my early years in Reformed and Presbyterian Churches including two years in Korea at what I perceive to be one of the most influential [but completely unknown to Westerners] churches called Onnuri. I received my Masters of Divinity degree at Princeton Theological Seminary so I have a good deal of exposure and understanding of Calvinism and Reformed Theology. It’s clearly shaped a portion of my theology and ecclesiology.
So having said that, I like to think that we’re really all part of One Larger Team called the Kingdom of God. Thus, if those four traits are the characteristics and commitments of New Calvinism, we should all be BIG fans. I would certainly be and would genuinely love to see my co-laborers in the New Calvinism team be committed to being Missional, Urban Minded [and not just the Suburbs], led by the Holy Spirit, and Bridge Builders.
How about you? Thoughts about the article?
Here’s the article from Time: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, church, Jesus, ministry, religion, seattle, al mohler, john piper, mark driscoll, new calvinism, time magazine
Friday, March 6, 2009 • 2:15 am
I get numerous emails from both blog readers and folks at my church asking me the following question:
What are the essential books I should be reading as a Christian?
Honestly, I have a hard time coming up with my list because it changes so often and I’m biased towards dead people. So, I’d like to ask you for your help in putting together a list of the 10 Most Essential Books for Christians. You don’t need to give me your entire list but what are couple books that you would absolutely include on anyone’s list?
Because there’s ten, think broadly so that we’re not just thinking about one aspect of Christianity. We should include theology, leadership, spirituality, etc., right?
This should be interesting.
And if you’re interested, you may also want to check a post from last year about people’s personal influential book.
Filed under: christianity, church, Jesus, religion, books, christians, spirituality
Monday, February 16, 2009 • 4:37 pm
I had the joy of having a great chat with Phyllis Tickle recently and she was gracious enough to shoot this video interview with me. Phyllis’ recent book, The Great Emergence, is making the waves amongst many people and it’s also on my ‘To Read’ list for 2009. She is one sharp amazing lady and I don’t want to spread rumors but I’m pretty sure she’s on steroids too…just like Scot McKnight. :)
Whether you agree with her premise of ‘The Great Emergence,’ I think it’s pretty obvious that one thing is inevitable: CHANGE.
Change happens and and will always happen and according to many, we’re in the midst of a historic change. But lest we get think too much of ourselves in the ‘Church,’ this historic change isn’t just within christendom but one that encompasses the larger world.
Here’s the interview with Phyllis and her bio from her website: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, church, culture, emerging church, Jesus, ministry, pastors, religion, phyllis tickle, the great emergence
Monday, July 2, 2007 • 12:12 pm
Let’s just say that last week was one of the more crazier weeks. Without even really trying, it seemed like I was upsetting a lot of people.
It began with an intense but good conversation with some representatives of the Republican party. Long story so I won’t even go into it. But let me just say this: I’m neither Republican or Democrat…but Go Obama. [Great, I've upset more people].
Then, of course, the email exchange with Dan Savage leading to the first installment of the “gay conversation.” It’s tough hearing your name associated with bigotry and hatred but it’s nothing compared to the pain, prejudice, and hatred that many in the gay community have faced. We need to listen to the stories of the gay community.
Through that post, I’ve also somehow managed to irk the fundamental Christians who question my hermeneutics, the liberals for my lack of theological acumen, couple Mars Hillians for what they perceive to be an insult to them and their pastor by my comments of not wanting to be compared to Mars Hill. [C'mon folks: you guys are major leaguers. I'm just a Single A minor leaguer with a .237 average. Don't worry about folks like me]. And to top it off, I’ve managed to annoy my wife for checking the blog on my smartphone during our quasi vacation time. Can I tick off any more people within a week? Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, Jesus, justice
Thursday, June 14, 2007 • 12:24 am
i love to study and teach the scriptures. but i also love to learn, study, engage, befriend, challenge, and be challenged by women and men that not only seek to submit themselves to the scriptures but more importantly, to jesus. i encountered this quote from cornel west several weeks ago [h/t enscriptchun] and have enjoyed meditating on it. we’re trying to invite him to quest but he’s on sabbatical for the next year and currently not taking requests. bummer. regardless, here goes:
“I speak as a Christian- one whose commitment to democracy is very deep but whose Christian convictions are deeper. Democracy is not my faith. And American democracy is not my idol. To see the gospel of Jesus Christ bastardized by imperial Christians and pulverized by Constantinian believers and then exploited by nihilistic elites of the American empire makes my blood boil. To be a Christian- a follower of Jesus Christ- is to love wisdom, love justice, and love freedom. This is the radical love in Christian freedom and the radical freedom in Christian love that embraces socratic questioning, prophetic witness, and tragicomic hope. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, Jesus, justice
Friday, March 2, 2007 • 8:11 pm
the fact is we are all biased and prejudiced; all depraved [and beautiful] and jacked up. we’re certainly all ‘racialized’ in many ways. long story short, i’ve been following some drama with the folks at Youth Specialties (Zondervan) over a book published by YS called, skits that teach. well, one of the skits is outright racist as it parodies asians. and yes, this is supposed to be educating the youth of america. i re-posted the above video entitled, ‘silent racism’ because it is so appropriate. it was created for an assignment during our church’s 2006 faith and race class. for me, it speaks so much to the systemic racism that exists and how we’re all guilty and must seek to see the beauty and dignity God gave to each person, each tribe, and each ethnicity. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: asian-american, christianity, church, emerging church, Jesus, justice, leadership, ministry, pastors, quest church, religion
Wednesday, February 21, 2007 • 6:11 pm
On this Ash Wednesday – as we begin the Lent Season – I wanted to share this quote that I discovered through various blogs. It’s haunting and compelling – all at the same time. I’m not sure the exact source of this quote as I’ve read different things. But I believe this comes from a young African pastor; this quote was found amongst his possessions or papers after he was martyred. This quote, supposedly, is shared in Brennan Manning’s book, “The Signature of Jesus.” Please excuse me if I may have mistaken the facts…
During the Lent season, it’s become ‘trendy’ to give something up for the 40 days leading up to Holy Saturday (day before Resurrection Sunday) but often times, even the things we give up tend to serve ourselves – sugar, soda, chocolate, etc. While I’m not discouraging the idea of giving something up, let me propose something radical during this Lent season: Focus on Jesus. Here’s the quote but beware: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, church, Jesus