Johnnie Mac & the E.C. – A Sequel

kinnon —  October 2, 2007 — 11 Comments

Tim Challies reports from a conference in the south where John MacArthur is speaking,

Incidentally, MacArthur often mentioned the Emerging Church in this talk. At one point he revealed that he has begun work on a new book that will serve as a follow-up to The Truth War. Since the publication of that book people have said that the book was unloving and that he should not write such books but instead just join in the conversation. So he has decided to write a book that answers the simple question, How did Jesus deal with those who misrepresented the truth? Did Jesus tend towards conversation or condemnation? Those who have studied the gospels will know…

Apparently the Gospels Tim and J.MacA read suggest Jesus tends towards condemnation. Or perhaps I’m just misunderstanding what Challies is inferring. (And I’m sure J.MacA would never suggest he understands the truth the way the One who flung the stars into space does, would he?)

Would that J.MacA listen to someone like Steve Taylor and actually sit down with one of the folk he condemns, Brian McLaren. I’m pretty sure Brian would be willing. And I’ve got a couple of cameras we could use to shoot the conversation in HD, if they’d like. But, I’m afraid condemnation is much easier than conversation. I’m just not sure it’s the Christian approach. No matter what some folk seem to find in the Gospels to justify their actions. (There has got to be a lot of unproductive fig trees shaking in their roots right now.)

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A television editor, writer & director since 1978. A Christian since 1982. More than a little frustrated with the Church in the West since late in the last millennium.

11 responses to Johnnie Mac & the E.C. – A Sequel

  1. Condemnation also sells LOTS more books than conversation. Could be I have just become cynical regarding the christian publishing industry.

  2. Jimmy your operative words are “publishing industry.”

    You are absolutely correct. It’s good for business.

  3. I bet my bottom dollar that MacArthur isn’t taking this approach because it sells. He really believes in his cause.

    Which is why I find Keller’s advice so compelling: “What matters is how we treat the people on the other side of the boundary. You’re going to win the younger leaders if we are the most gracious and the most kind and the least self-righteous in controversy.”

  4. I think it’s a little of both. He’s a true believer who has no issue if by stirring it up – it helps sell a few more books. I’d rather listen to or read Keller any day of the week. Even though I’m on the other side of the boundary.

  5. Thanks Bill for this. Looks like business, business and more business as usual for JM. Whatever happend to grace in all this …. ?

    And the Christian PI? Woeful. I’ve had the privilige of working with some of the children of CPI ceo’s and president’s. They’ve sadly lost the way .. anywhere. The industry, generally speaking, has not been gracious to them.

    Let’s help turn things around – embrace grace and pass it on – overflowingly.

  6. I don’t think it is the book sales (aka the money) that appeals to MacArthur, but rather there is an alluring external validation that comes from the success and/or buzz surrounding ones work. This can feed all kinds of self-justifying rationalizations. (That goes for both side, by the way).

    Of course, he does believe in what he is saying and, frankly, doubt a conversation with McLaren would do much to change his mind. Oh well…


  7. What I’d love J.MacA and his trusty side-kick/ghost writer PJ to do would be to come out and tell us who’s in and who’s out of the fold – rather than the constant dance they do. I think we’d be shocked at the small size of the true-believers in their estimation. And at that point we would probably realize it’s pointless to continue any kind of dialog. As we would only be confirming Einstein’s supposed statement that the true sign of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting different results.

  8. I have nothing to contribute to the discussion, but I do hate Figs…
    link to

  9. I like toast.

  10. Grace, You’ve been reading the Hanster waaaaaaay too much. :-} Point taken.

    And Jon, thanks for responding to the fig line. I thought it was the best part of the post. But I would now, wouldn’t I. God Hates Figs is a funny site.

  11. I like figs and toast. Does that mean I’ll go to hell?

    The most important thing for me now is to figure out the answer to this question. For the final resting place of my disembodied soul after I die is critical. Must find answer…

    I can’t believe it! As I write, I am being interrupted by some people asking me for money to buy some food….what an annoyance, I wish they would go away…can’t they see that I am trying to do something important here?

    Am I in or out? Maybe Google can help? they seem to have the answers to everything…or am I confusing Google with someone else?


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