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We live in as pivotal and defining an age as the Great Depression or the Sixtiesa period whose definition, say some cultural observers, includes a warning of the churchs influence.
The result? A society measurably less religious but decidedly more spiritual. Less influenced by authority than by experience. More attuned to images than to words.
How does the church adapt to such a culture? Or should it, in fact, eschew adapting for maintaining a course it has followed these last two millennia? Or something in between?
These are exactly the questions asked in The Church In Emerging Culture by five Christian thinker-speaker-writers, each who advocate unique stances regarding what the churchs message should be (and what methods should be used to present it) as it journeys through this evolving, postmodern era. The authors are:
Andy CrouchRe:Generation Quarterly editor-in-chief Michael Hortonprofessor and reformed theologian Frederica Mathewes-Greenauthor, commentator, and Orthodox Christian Brian D. McLarenpostmodernist, author, pastor, and Emergent senior fellow Erwin Raphael McManusauthor and pastor of the innovative and interethnic L.A.-based church, Mosaic
Most unique about their individual positions is that theyre presented not as singular essays but as lively discussions in which the other four authors freely (and frequently) comment, critique, and concur. That element, coupled with a unique photographic design that reinforces the depth of their at-once congenial and feisty conversation, gives you all-access entrée into this groundbreaking discourse.
Whats more, general editor Leonard Sweet (author of SoulTsunami and AquaChurch, among several other acclaimed texts) frames the thought-provoking dialogue with a profoundly insightful, erudite introductory essaypractically a book within a book.
The Church In Emerging Culture is foundational reading for leaders and serious students of all denominations and church styles.
Leonard Sweet (ed.) The Church in Emerging Culture: Five Perspectives (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2003)
Reviewed by Darren Cronshaw
This is a fun and insightful... Read more
What is the nature of the church's mission in the world? Is our message unchanging? Are our methods unchanging? This book explores these vital questions. Read morePublished on October 8, 2009 by John Dekker
I was intrigued by this book given the diversity of views and capability of the authors. The primary questions listed on the back cover were pivotal: "What should the church look... Read morePublished on March 28, 2009 by Laurence T. Baxter
I completely agree with the review entitled "pass". The layout of this book makes it very difficult to understand or track with. Read morePublished on November 13, 2008 by M.J.D.
The Church in Emerging Culture was generally unremarkable. Each of the five essays contained thought-provoking ideas, but overall they lacked coherence. Read morePublished on December 12, 2007 by R. S. Fertig
I have greatly enjoyed this book. The conversation format provokes thought and adds a level of depth and clarity that is rarely experienced (especially in books concerning the... Read morePublished on May 21, 2007 by R. E. Hoch
The book gives five different perspectives, from five different authors, on how the church should respond to an increasing post-modern culture. Read morePublished on January 9, 2007 by Bradley J. Brisco
If you're new to the postmodernism question, then this book isn't for you. Better to start someplace else. Read morePublished on June 1, 2006 by SKClimacus