Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Emerging Talk

De at Thinklings doesn't buy into the emerging church movement. For one thing, she finds its lingo bizarre:

But have you heard these guys talk?

For starters: if you still, frequently, have to explain to people the difference between emergENT and emergeING, perhaps you need to pick a new moniker. I still don’t know what the difference is. And I’ve never quite figured out what they are “emerging” from. And do you ever quit emerging? Lots of things emerge, but they eventually stop emerging, right (once fully emerged, I mean)? Will the movement change its name to “Emerged” when it’s done? And is this the first movement to have a participle for a name?

One key value of emergent/ing is “context”. You have to fit what you do and say into the context of the surrounding culture. I agree with this, for the most part. That’s why I’m a bit baffled by the college-professorish nature of emerge-talk.

Reading emergent writings in the blogosphere, I sometimes get the sense that they are written by stoned college students in basements staring at their hands and saying "Dude, look at my hand! It's so profound!" And as De points out, it is the height of irony that a movement that proports to speak the Gospel in different contexts has a such a baffling lexicon of ever-shifting meanings incomprehensible to the outside world. Much of this language exists for sheer obfuscation.

4 comments:

James said...

Its not the first movement to have a participle as part of its name. What is "united" and how many movements have that as part of their name?

Jeff the Baptist said...

I liked that Thinklings piece myself. It reminded me of a Lark News or other comedy bit titled "Local Emergent Church Recedes."

codepoke said...

FYI: De is a guy.

Anonymous said...

I so like the idea of the Emergent Church,ALOT. It's such a great concept to take the junk out of the church and put Jesus in new wine skins. But obviously I don't get it. Just figured out why from this post...