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The Evolution of the Emergent Church

In my last post in this series A Harlot, An Emergent and a Pope Walked into a Bar… we looked at how Ken Wilber’s Integral Consciousness is becoming instrumental in bringing together the Emergent Church and the Mystery religions. The end goal being of course, the creation of the One-World Religion.

When we talk about the Emergent Church we must understand that nothing is by emergentaccident, nor coincidence. Even the terms “Emergent”/ “emergence” /“emerging” have greater significance than we are led to believe.  In this post I would like to examine the use of the word “Emergent/Emergence”.  I would also like to prove it’s atheistic and New Age roots.

Emergent Church leader Doug Pagitt says:

doug pagitt“Five years ago or so when numbers of us started using this phrase “emergent,” there were a number of reasons why we thought this word worked well. The reason I was most excited about it is the use in a forestry term or an agriculture term. Emergent growth is the growth in a forest that is growing below the surface, that if you were to knock away the dead pine needles and leaves and branches, you would see the growth that’s happening there …. So it’s not against, it’s not over in another field, it’s not something that wants to destroy the forest; in fact, it’s going to grow because of the protection of it — the idea that there was this emergent growth that was happening in Christianity, that was protected and that was going to have the chance to survive because of the environment. We wanted to talk about what is the nature of that emergent growth of Christianity in the world…” (source: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/2005/07/08/july-8-2005-doug-pagitt-extended-interview/11764/)

As lovely and organic as that all sounds, “emergent” has a much greater meaning and a wider application than Pagitt acknowledges here.

The term “emergent” was coined by philosopher and skeptic G. H. Lewes, who wrote:

“Every resultant is either a sum or a difference of the co-operant forces; their sum, when their directions are the same — their difference, when their directions are contrary. Further, every resultant is clearly traceable in its components, because these are homogeneous and commensurable. It is otherwise with emergents, when, instead of adding measurable motion to measurable motion, or things of one kind to other individuals of their kind, there is a co-operation of things of unlike kinds. The emergent is unlike its components insofar as these are incommensurable, and it cannot be reduced to their sum or their difference.”

 

To apply this philosophical Theory of Emergence to a religious context: one might say that typically two opposing elements, or religions, such as Christianity and Islam when compared, have differences between the two that are easily detectable and measurable.

However, as Lewes says, it is otherwise with “emergents”. Within the Emergent philosophical framework, the two religions are not compared as two opposing elements but rather become a “co-operation of things of unlike kinds”. And “The emergent is unlike its components insofar as these are incommensurable, and it cannot be reduced to their sum or their difference”. The differences therefore become immeasurable, undetectable as the two opposing elements are merged.

(Sounds a lot to me like the Hegellian Principle…you may remember from Satan’s Tool in the Emergent Church: a “thesis” combined with an “antithesis” makes a “synthesis”.)

Does philosophy have the ability to influence? Is the Emergence Theory of Lewes affecting Christianity?

Well…Berlin will soon be building the world’s first “House of One”, a synagogue, mosque and church all in one:  http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-27872551

Lewes’ Emergent Theory underpins the “emerging area of discourse” that is Integral Consciousness.

“..in philosophy, systems theory, science, and art, emergence is the way complex systems and patterns arise out of a multiplicity of relatively simple interactions. Emergence is central to the theories of integrative levels and of complex systems.” (source: Wikiepdia)

ken wilberKen Wilber’s Integral Consciousness theory seeks to build a new platform of truth and reality. This new platform is created by bringing together a synthesis of the “best of pre-modern, modern, and postmodern reality. It is portrayed as a “theory of everything” and offers an approach “to draw together an already existing number of separate paradigms into an interrelated network of approaches that are mutually enriching.” (source: wikipedia)

As we saw in the last post the Emergent Church is heartily promoting Ken Wilber and his New Age ideas and philosophies.  This is no surprise considering that both Ken Wilber’s Integral Consciousness and the Emergent church are based on Emergent Theory.

An integrative level, or level of organization, is a set of phenomena emerging on pre-existing phenomena of lower level. Typical examples include life emerging on non-living substances, and consciousness emerging on nervous systems….The sequence of levels is often described as one of increasing complexity….” (Corning: Wikipedia, emphasis mine)

 

Doug Pagitt addresses this very topic here:

“But emergence theory also began to be used in this conversation at the same time, and emergence theory has to do with complexity and that which is going to develop out of chaos and complexity — that what we would look at and think is just random actually starts to form patterns to it, and that’s a helpful way to think about this, too, that there seems to be this chaos that’s happening, but if you were to study it long enough you begin to see the patterns…. That’s not a bad way to talk about it as well” (source: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/religionandethics/2005/07/08/july-8-2005-doug-pagitt-extended-interview/11764/)

If Doug Pagitt’s quote sounds alarmingly like the Theory of Evolution it’s because Emergent Theory and Evolutionary Theory go hand in hand.  In fact Emergent Theory was one philosophy that paved the way to Darwinism.

 

“[In] evolutionary processes, causation is iterative; effects are also causes. And this is equally true of the synergistic effects produced by emergent systems. In other words, emergence itself… has been the underlying cause of the evolution of emergent phenomena in biological evolution; it is the synergies produced by organized systems that are the key.” (Corning: wikipedia)

The premise of evolutionary theory is that a higher set of phenomena arises or emerges out of a pre-existing lower level of phenomena.

This is the basis of both Emergent and Integral Consciousness theories. That out of a lower order comes higher order. You know, like apes turning into humans…

SO in summary:

  • Ken Wilber’s Integral Consciousness theory says that humans Altitude handout. Pagesevolve to a higher level of consciousness. (This is standard New Age doctrine.)

“Some see the process of integration as incarnating Christ consciousness, some call it becoming the Divine Human, but perhaps it is most accurate to think of it as a “new normal” for those of us who want to be pioneers and begin to live in a new way, fully connected with our divine potential.

What is clear is that integrating aspects of this higher octave of our being HAS been demonstrated by historical mystics and that we are getting closer to being able to replicate this in a wider way.” Barbara Marx Hubbard, New Ager, occultist (http://theshiftnetwork.com/NextStageOfHumanEvolution)

 

  • Emergent theory says that there is a “co-operation of unlike kinds” and that distinctions and measurable differences between unlike kinds disappear.

 

  • Emergent theory lead to Evolutionary theory.  And Integral Consciousness is based on Evolutionary theory.

 

And the main point of it all:

  • The Emergent church promotes Ken Wilber’s Integral consciousness. Integral Consciousness is the evolution of human consciousness into godhood or divinity; 

 

  • The Emergent church have deliberately called themselves by the name of “emergent” because they see themselves as the next level, the higher level of a “set of phenomena emerging on pre-existing phenomena of lower level” in the “evolution” of Christianity. Christianity as we have known it is outdated, irrelevant, politically incorrect, low-level. But through these “emergents” a new relevant, higher-level of Christianity is evolving. 

 

  • Ultimately this higher-level of Christianity is heading towards “emergence”: the “co-operation of unlike kinds” as consistent with emerging theory. In other words: the creation of a one-world religion.

 

Once again the devil is using human pride to further his plans. Pride in intellect, pride in attaining to “higher levels”, pride in reaching “god-hood.” There is nothing new under the sun…

And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil…” Genesis 3:4,5

 

 

Of interest:   Brian McLaren, in collaboration with a New Age yoga teacher, has recently brought out a video series “integrating Naked spirituality, Yoga, Tai Chi and Chi Gong” ( http://brianmclaren.net/archives/get-involved/).  

 

 

 

 

 


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The Falling Dominoes in the Emergent Church

The chief danger that confronts the coming century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance, salvation without regeneration, politics without dominoesGod, heaven without hell.” (William Booth)

This post is part 4 in this series and follows on from Satan’s Tool in the Emergent Church.  I had planned to write about the role mysticism and the New Age plays within the Emergent Church but the Holy Spirit stepped in.  He has impressed upon me that another step, in this post, is required by Him, before I post on mysticism.

It is my position that when absolute truth is discarded, then logically the next step is the re-emergence of mystical spirituality.  However it is necessary to understand how it is that the breakdown of absolute truth leads to the re-emergence of these ancient mystical practices.  And so I will concentrate this post on some of the Truths of Christianity which have been recently changed, diluted or rejected.   In the last post we looked at how the philosophical theory of de-constructionism has taken hold within the Emergent Church and that its leaders, such as Tony Campolo, Rob Bell, Leonard Sweet and Brian Mclaren, to name a few, are unashamedly using this system to interpret the Bible.  Now we will look at some of the results of de-constructionism.

“Stamping out faith in Biblical absolutes is central to this transformation (of the “church”). A mind anchored in God’s Word won’t compromise, but when that anchor is removed, the current of change can carry that mind anywhere. As Jesuit scholastic, Mark Mossa, wrote in his endorsement of Brian McLaren’s latest book: “The Secret Message of Jesus, challenges us to put aside our sterile certainties about Christ and reconsider the imaginative world of Jesus stories, signs and wonders.” (Quote from http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/brianmclaren.htm)truth ies

No doctrine is safe when Biblical absolutes of truth are put aside.  Here are some examples of the essential doctrines that are now being re-defined by the Emergent Church’s method of “Did God really say?”  They are:

  • The doctrine of sin.

Tony Campolo says : ““…Isn’t God’s message to sinful humanity that He sees in each of us a divine nature of such worth that He sacrificed His own Son so that our divine potentialities might be realized? … The hymn writer who taught us to sing “Amazing Grace” was all too ready to call himself a “wretch” … Forgetting our divinity and over-identifying with our [Freudian] anal humanity… Erich Fromm, one of the most popular psychoanalysts of our time, recognized the diabolical social consequences that can come about when a person loses sight of his/her own divinity …”

It seems that Mr Campolo has believed the lie of the serpent that “Ye shall be as gods…”  This denial of the sinfulness of humanity leads to the distortion of:

  • The centrality of Christ’s atoning work on the cross.

Take a look at what Mclaren himself has said:

“”[T]his is one of the huge problems with the traditional understanding of hell, because if the Cross is in line with Jesus’ teaching, then I won’t say the only and I certainly won’t say … or even the primary or a primary meaning of the Cross … is that the Kingdom of God doesn’t come like the kingdoms of this world by inflicting violence and coercing people. But that the kingdom of God comes through suffering and willing voluntary sacrifice right? But in an ironic way the doctrine of hell basically says no, that’s not really true. At the end God gets his way through coercion and violence and intimidation and uh domination just like every other kingdom does. The Cross isn’t the center then, the Cross is almost a distraction and false advertising for God.”

The substitutionary atoning work of Christ on the cross is pushed aside in the name of voluntary sacrifice. Of course, dismissing Christ’s atoning work on the cross then leads to the rejection of:

  • The doctrine of Hell.

Rob Bell says this about hell in his universalistic book “Love Wins”:

“A staggering number of people have been taught that a select few Christians will spend forever in a peaceful, joyous place called heaven, while the rest of humanity spends forever in torment and punishment in hell with no chance for anything better…. This is misguided and toxic and ultimately subverts the contagious spread of Jesus’s message of love, peace, forgiveness, and joy that our world desperately needs to hear.”

(Misguided and toxic?…Jesus Himself said to:  “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it” and described hell as a place “where their worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched.”)

Because Jesus Himself said something this “violent” and “elitist”, then naturally the next question would pertain to:

 

  • The person of Jesus Christ Himself, God Incarnate in human flesh, the Son of God.

Tony Campolo writes of his pantheistic beliefs:

One of the most startling discoveries of my life was the realization that the Jesus that I love, the Jesus who died for me on Calvary, that Jesus, is waiting, mystically and wonderfully, in every person I meet. I find Jesus everywhere. The difference between a Christian and non-Christian is not that Jesus isn’t in the non-Christian–the difference is that the Jesus who is within him is a Jesus to whom he will not surrender his life.”

 If Jesus perhaps isn’t really God in the flesh, then of course the next doctrine to question is:

  • There is no other name under Heaven by which man can be saved than that of Jesus Christ.

Tony Campolo again: “Jesus is the only Savior, but not everybody who is being saved by Him is aware that He is the one who is doing the saving.”

This doctrine has been undermined by Rick Warren as well as numbers of other Christian leaders having signed the Yale document produced by Muslims leaders called “A Common Word Between Us and You”.  This document is in line with the commandment in the Koran which says to “Say: ‘O People of the Scripture! come to a common word as between us and you: that we worship none but God’“.

The Muslim god Allah and the God of the Bible, YahWeh, are NOT the same.  These Christian leaders seem to have no idea that they are signing themselves over to Islam and, of course, paving the way for Chrislam.  Read the document here: http://www.acommonword.com/the-acw-document/ .

Here is a list of all the Christian leaders who have signed the document: http://www.acommonword.com/christian-signatories/

And so it goes on.  As one doctrine is changed, watered-down or rejected the next domino falls, then the next, and so on.

The changing, dismissing or outright rejection of God’s Word by His “church” is not something God takes lightly.

“For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.” Psalm 138:2.

man dominoes“God’s Word is His communication, His promise, the revelation of Himself to His people. It is to be a lamp to our feet in a dark and fallen world, without it we would have no way to know God or how to do God’s will. To disregard God’s Word that is holy, pure and absolutely true is to defame God’s name and character. It is to bring ruin upon our walk. So it becomes the main focus point in our daily walk with Christ.” (taken from Let Us Reason http://www.letusreason.org/Doct42.htm)

The result of de-constructionism in the church is to undermine the authority of the Bible, as the Word of God, to question even the most basic fundamental tenets of Christianity and to “re-define” it to become more relevant to our post-modern society. (see “The “Emergent-cy” of Post-Modernist Christianity“) The Holy Spirit, as the Spirit of truth, will only witness to truth, so when truth is discarded, the Holy Spirit cannot bear witness, becomes grieved as Christ is blasphemed and, then, like a dove, eventually takes flight.  In Ezekiel 10 the glory of God departed from the Temple as a result of Israel repeatedly ignoring God’s Word through His prophets.  Israel became Ichabod.

And so it is with the Emergent church.  What remains is but an empty shell consisting of a mixture of religious platitudes and man’s philosophy.  But as “nature abhors a vacuum” something must fill that emptiness.  Something ancient and spiritual.

And that “something” is mysticism.

Next post:  The Deep, Deep Roots of Emerging Mysticism

  • The Re-emergence of ancient mysticism
  • The Connection with the New Age


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One Woman’s Stand Against the Lie of Chrislam

This link was blocked from American YouTube.  This German woman is a true hero of the faith.  At an interfaith concert where Chrislam was being promoted she alone stood, and proclaimed “Jesus is Lord!”  as everyone else sat. Click on link below to see what she did.

“How long will you falter between two opinions?  If the Lord is God follow HIm, but if Baal, follow him.  But the people answered him not a word.”