Lovin’ the local church…

“You would be hard pressed to find an evangelical thinker over the past fifty years more respected than John Stott. His preaching is exemplary. His commentaries are clear. His commitment to missions and the global church are beyond reproach. And his theology is always balanced. That’s why the following, from Stott’s recent book The Living Church: Convictions of a Lifelong Pastor, is all the more striking:

“I trust that none of my readers is that grotesque anomaly, an unchurched Christian. The New Testament knows nothing of such a person. For the church lies at the very center of the eternal purpose of God.”

— by Pastor Kevin DeYoung in “WHY WE LOVE THE CHURCH, In Praise of Institutions and Organized Religion” p. 159

The Bible: a firm, welcome road beneath our feet

One of the greatest concerns with the ’emerging church’ movement is their departure from a traditional view of the Bible (authority, infallibility, inerrancy, revelation, objective, literal, absolute), and, their proximity to the relativism and spiritual vagueness of the day.

How happy I was when reading this excellent passage from the fine book by De Young & Kluck, WHY WE’RE NOT EMERGENT, BY TWO GUYS WHO SHOULD BE (Moody Publishers, 2008). Of course, the C. S. Lewis quote is a gem, but hear the application which follows, too.

Isn’t it strange, C.S. Lewis wondered, that the Law would be the Psalmist’s delight (Ps. 1:2)? Respect or reverence we might understand, but delight? Who delights in law? And why? Lewis explains: “Their delight in the Law, is a delight in having touched firmness; like the pedestrian’s delight in feeling the hard road beneath his feet after a false short cut has long entangled him in muddy fields.”
In our world of perpetual squishitude, why offer people more of what they already have — vague spirituality, uncertainty, and borderline interpretative relativism? Why not offer them something hard and old like the Law in which we delight, and dare to say and belive, “Thus saith the Lord”?

— Kevin DeYoung p. 85, WHY WE’RE NOT EMERGENT

This is just one reason I like this book so much: it not only exposes the emergent nonsense for what it is, while at the same time shoring up the foundations of orthodox Christian faith and practice.