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Postmodern and Wesleyan?: Exploring the Boundaries and Possibilities Paperback – June 1, 2009
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The writers in this volume are postmoderns or those who are uniquely positioned to understand postmodernism. This volume gives us an opportunity to hear their voices and dialog with their ideas so that we can better discern what the church might look like in our changing culture. I encourage you to read this volume with a spirit of curiosity and expectation. --Vickie Copp, Professor, Nazarene Theological Seminary
Postmodern and Wesleyan? is an excellent resource for your small group or Sunday School class. The essays provide stimulating insights from the past and investigate possibilities for our tomorrows. Any class that enjoys meaningful conversation will find a broad range of perspectives on why we live as we do and how we can adapt to a rapidly changing world. The probing questions at the end of each chapter will penetrate your assumptions and engage your class in life-shaping discussions. --Woodie Stevens, SDMI Director, Church of the Nazarene
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It is claimed on the first page that consensus over which books should be included in our Bible emerged only after councils, arguments, and shouting matches. The truth is that the authority of most books was immediately recognized because they were written by prophets and apostles. Certainly Peter acknowledged that what Paul wrote was Scripture (2 Peter 3:15-16). The early councils did not define Scripture, they defended Scripture. Of course if Peter did not write those words and if Paul did not write the Pastoral Epistles, then all we have are forgeries and only the higher critic knows for sure what part is God's Word.
While this book advocates a "big tent," meaning that we should be open-minded enough to allow disagreement on nonessentials, apparently we disagree over what is essential or how big the tent should be. According to this book "most Wesleyan statements of faith shy away from articulating a strict inerrancy view of the Bible. Viewing the Bible as infallible on matters of salvation rather than inerrant on all matters allows a 'big tent' for discussion and reflection to occur" [p. 25]. But things went down hill rapidly when Eve allowed the serpent under her tent. He not only questioned God's Word, but she followed suit by adding to it, and he followed up by denying it. The result was that once sin got its nose in the tent we have lived in a big tent full of sin ever since.Read more ›
Therefore, based on my views I knew that I would not enjoy reading another postmodern view of the Church but I was intrigued since the writers were appealing to Wesleyan tradition and though I am not a Nazarene or Wesleyan, I am Arminian and I do agree with much of what Wesley wrote and lived for. I was wondering what emergents would have to say to conservative Arminians. Yet once again I was disappointed by the direction that this book believes the Church should take.
As typical with emergent books, the book attacks the organizational church but instead of correcting the modern church through the Scriptures, the writers believe that the Church should avoid the Scriptures. No doubt the writers believe the Bible has its place but they believe that since truth is not knowable, we should not defend the inerrancy of the Bible or try to hold to a literal six-day creation as found in Genesis 1-2. The writers believe that the main problem with the Church is that we have come to "worship" the Bible instead of being a loving community. Perhaps but I found their arguments weak for casting aside the Bible in favor of postmodernism or infallible science.
Overall this was simply another typical emergent work. Nothing new.Read more ›