It’s not as simple as LGBT vs. Religious Liberty

CT

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Why the CRCNA Should Consider Church Planting as Vital for its Strategic Development of Future Leaders

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The “Greedy” Church Plant Complaints

I am often surprised when I hear resentment expressed at church planting. The statements usually come in rather sheepish form as complaints:

  • church plants steal bright, energetic young people from established churches that did all the hard work of educating them, raising them, etc.
  • church plants disperse covenant children to too many places. We’d be better to gather all of them into one, big church rather than have them scattered in little, weak churches.
  • church plants take the some of the brightest and the best seminary graduates taking them off the market for established churches looking to hire top tier staff

In my experience these complaints get aired when people feel “safe” enough to express their feelings. It’s kind of like when someone looks around, sees only people like themselves and lets loose something very non-PC.

Door #3

The third complaint was asked of me recently quite innocently by a young woman. I got the sense that it wasn’t her complaint, but that she’d heard the complaint and wanted my take on it given my experience and promotion of church planting.

For a general apologetic for church planting I recommend Tim Keller’s “Why Plant Churches.”  He addresses the common complaints quite well I think.

Watching Our Biases Continue reading

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What Made Hitler

The Dish

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Happiest and Saddest places in American, not where you think

Rod Dreher

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blog evangelical for traffic

On faith

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Christianity and Geology

Nat Geo

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Dish readers respond to Slate Atheist Origins Book Review

The dish

What Robbins, and by extension you and Nick Spencer, seem to want is a Christian monopoly on “good values” – charity, humility, self-sacrifice, concern for the downtrodden; essentially liberal humanism with the theological scaffolding still attached – such that an anti-Christian (opposite of Christian) morality is by definition against all of these things and for “bad values.” Nietzsche, for all his brilliance and insight, was a fiercely anti-democratic elitist who hated weakness and had no use for social justice (Ayn Rand aped much what Nietzsche was doing, but with far less wit and humor). Presumably Robbins wishes contemporary atheists would own up to this and get down with their bad selves. In value-neutral terms, he thinks Christianity is a cat and Atheism is a dog and modern “New” atheists are dogs that eat cat food.

This is wrong for at least two reasons. First is Nietzsche’s gross misreading of social history and his own time. He castigates Christianity for glorifying weakness and poverty across millennia, without noting that Europe’s nations and their institutionalized Christianity, whatever their rhetoric of altruism, operated by the values he extols: aristocracy, patriarchy, indifference to suffering. It was the conditions created by these values and systems that birthed socialism and communism, largely atheistic movements that Nietzsche loathed.The other, related reason Robbins is wrong is his ‘no true Christian’ assumptions. The Christianity of doubt that you and he seem to both favor is a lovely little thing, but it has little truck in the popular consciousness. Mainstream Christianity, especially that which is most influential in our politics, is as it ever was in Nietzsche’s time: mouthing pieties of love and sacrifice, while in practice giving cover to a plutocratic status quo, and holding contempt for anyone that doesn’t fit its definition of humanity.

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