Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
bachanon

anyone in touch with the "organic" church movement?

Recommended Posts

lately, i've found books, "blue like jazz", "velvet elvis", "searching for god knows what", "revolution", that discuss a more active, non-judgmental christianity. these books do not negate mega churches, but they do reinforce a post modern ideology many of us baby busters may be experiencing. i'm finding that my small group from fellowship of the woodlands lacks a certain depth. is anyone involved in the home church movement?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
lately, i've found books, "blue like jazz", "velvet elvis", "searching for god knows what", "revolution", that discuss a more active, non-judgmental christianity. these books do not negate mega churches, but they do reinforce a post modern ideology many of us baby busters may be experiencing. i'm finding that my small group from fellowship of the woodlands lacks a certain depth. is anyone involved in the home church movement?

Non-judgmental Christianity?... can anyone say "OXYMORON". :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Non-judgmental Christianity?... can anyone say "OXYMORON". :rolleyes:

Matthew 7

3"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Matthew 7

3"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.

Being judgmental is not necessarily a black and white issue. Principles, prayer and faith need to be applied in correctly doing/refraining from it.

For instance, here Paul says in some way, particularly in dealing with Immoral "Christians", which he describes, Christians should judge those inside the church; those who claim to be Christians.

Also notice they're judging sin and not necessarily whether they are true Christians or not; although they may or may not be.

1 Corinthians 5

9I (Paul) wrote you in my letter (P)not to associate with immoral people; 10I did not at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and swindlers, or with (Q)idolaters, for then you would have to go out of the world. 11But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called (R)brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or (S)an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler--not even to eat with such a one. 12For what have I to do with judging (T)outsiders? (U)Do you not judge those who are within the church? 13But those who are outside, God judges. (V)REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES.

Below, Jesus says his purpose in coming to this world was not to judge, but to save. However, his next statement also says there will be a time when people will be finally judged to heaven or hell - reading it plainly, it appears he is not speaking directly in terms of sin (as Paul was previously) but in terms of eternal salvation/damnation.

John 12

44And Jesus cried out and said, "(BT)He who believes in Me, does not believe in Me but in Him who sent Me. 45"(BU)He who sees Me sees the One who sent Me. 46"(BV)I have come as Light into the world, so that everyone who believes in Me will not remain in darkness. 47"If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for (BW)I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48"(BX)He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; (BY)the word I spoke is what will judge him at (BZ)the last day. 49"(CA)For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me (CB)has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak. 50"I know that (CC)His commandment is eternal life; therefore the things I speak, I speak (CD)just as the Father has told Me."

The main thing with this issue or any other is to see what the entire bible says and to understand it in it's context.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
lately, i've found books, "blue like jazz", "velvet elvis", "searching for god knows what", "revolution", that discuss a more active, non-judgmental christianity. these books do not negate mega churches, but they do reinforce a post modern ideology many of us baby busters may be experiencing. i'm finding that my small group from fellowship of the woodlands lacks a certain depth. is anyone involved in the home church movement?

I would encourage you to find a church not because they "judge less" necessarily, but that they teach what the Bible teaches.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would encourage you to find a church not because they "judge less" necessarily, but that they teach what the Bible teaches.

Hermeneutics and other Bible study tends to be a pretty subjective topic. Maybe it oughtn't be, but that's how it seems to work out.

Edited by kylejack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hermeneutics and other Bible study tends to be a pretty subjective topic. Maybe it oughtn't be, but that's how it seems to work out.

It's true that some passages are more difficult to interpret than others. But many, if not most are very obvious.

There are churches that accept outlandish doctrines and behavior that clearly disagree with biblical teachings. Many times the reason is because they're scared people will leave their church or they might offend somebody. If they truly believed what the bible teaches, they'd relay the true message in their pulpits and classrooms.

Also, the bible promises to give understanding to those who are truly seeking the truth. Problem is, many people don't want to take the time to study and pray about what they are reading.

The God of the Bible is not a God of confusion. He has given us the ability to understand his word. I would not submit that it's too hard to understand and therefore give up or make excuses (I'm not necessarily saying that is what you're implying).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Non-judgmental Christianity?... can anyone say "OXYMORON". :rolleyes:
Amen sister !! :lol:

I know some Christians who are the most tolerant, accepting, helpful people I've ever met, and I know some atheists who do nothing but hate and judge. What's your point?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

guess it was pointless to avoid the bible thumpers and anti christian gang with the thread topic. i'm copying comments on a book that helps define the kind of people i'm thinking of. please do not respond unless you have something to add to the topic. thanks.

From Publishers Weekly

Viola (Pagan Christianity), a leader in the house church movement, believes the church as we know it today is nothing like what God intended it to be. According to Viola, the first-century church, which should be our pattern, met in homes without any official pastor. All members of the church were involved in worship, spontaneously breaking out with teaching or song as they were moved. Decisions were not made until everyone reached consensus. There were no official leaders or elders, but there were men who served and taught and helped others, thus leading by example. Viola believes that to bring the church back on track, both clergy and denominations must be completely abolished. Churches should not have buildings nor should they worry about doctrinal statements. Such radical ideas will best be received by Emergent and postmodern readers. Skeptics will cringe at Viola's strident tone and all-or-nothing approach. More concrete examples of what Viola has seen work well in his 20 years of house church work would have greatly strengthened the book. (Aug.)

Review

10 years ago I began reimagining everything. Fresh out of high school, I encountered a New York-trained chef working as a short order cook in an out-of-the-way country buffet restaurant, all to be part of an experimental community of Christians who had no paid ministers, no top-down structure and who practiced their own priesthood with open, participatory gatherings. This guy gently coaxed me out of denominational Christianity into the wild and wooly world of house churching. I had tons of questions. Reading was as crucial in this period of questioning as the flesh-and-blood connections I was making between bodies and church; paper guides could carefully lay out where the nascent North American house church movement was going. Two newly-self-published tomes by a Florida house church planter named Frank Viola were crucial reads: Rethinking the Wineskin and Who Is Your Covering?. In them Frank carefully laid out why authentic church might have more to do with bodies than buildings, and mutuality than mortar. As the Quakers say I was "convinced," and began a journey into shared life with other friends and followers of Jesus in intentional community. A decade later I'm still involved in house churching but my questions persist. (I'd have it no other way.) My questions have changed, too - they probe deeper than the "what" of church and move into the "why."

Thankfully, Frank's writing has matured along with my questions, and "Reimagining Church" is the result. Rewritten and, well, reimagined for the 21st century, Frank remains a champion of church in the 1st century. But at its best, his is not a wooden literalism verging on fundamentalism, but an evocative appreciation for the peculiar genius of Jesus and his earliest followers for the ways Way-farers can arrange ourselves to most beautifully reflect God's in-breaking kingdom. Let's face it: Viola's earlier 2008 release Pagan Christianity was a rampaging bull in an ecclesiastical china shop. Called simplistic and mean-spirited by detractors and a prophetic call for renewal by its champions, all readers had this in common - we wanted more. Okay, Mr. Deconstructor, we said. We see how you can tear down someone else's sand castle with gusto - now let's see how you'd build your own. And build he does.

Has anyone read The Shack? If this 2 million-plus selling spiritual adventure novel shows us anything, it's that the Trinity is hot. No, I'm not talking about Carrie-Anne Moss (but her too...my wife agrees). I mean the divine interplay between Father, Son, and Spirit. In an era captivated by the possibility of discovering The Secret and fascinated by A New Earth, G-D can still hold G-D's own, especially when conveyed in the mystery of a loving God-as-community that's the heart of Trinitarian spirituality. So the super-cool thing about "Reimagining Church" is that it doesn't open up with a dry discourse on why the New Testament church is better than First Baptist on the corner - instead it opens with a depiction of the Godhead in fellowship. Taking a cue from Stanley Grenz, Miroslav Volf and others, Frank puts flesh on conceptual bones by showing how it's within the DNA of the church to reflect the mutually-indwelling nature of the Trinity. How can we harness this innate spiritual energy? How does this look in everyday, practical example? This is what the first part of "Reimagining Church" fleshes out.

Part two is a comprehensive re-visioning of what leadership, authority and accountability in a Trinity-rooted, organic church. If you've always had an inkling that you don't need denominational "covering" or hierarchical authority fencing you in to be right with God (as an individual or church body), "Reimagining" will fund your biblical imagination with an alternative reading of Scripture that points to the dignity of each person in the church, encouraging relational and shared authority responsive to the leading of Christ alone. Sometimes I feel like an amphibian, breathing the air and water of two worlds - the house church movement and the emerging church conversation. Sometimes my friends in each misunderstand the Other - that is, when they're not amphibians like me. Being kind of a book guy, I keep an eye out for books that occupy liminal space - that are bilingual, that breathe air and water. "Reimagining Church" is one such book - it has something to offer both conversations, and maybe even move us all forward. You might not agree with all the author's conclusions, but your creative capacity to return afresh to Christian faith's sources will be enlarged as a result of reading. Here's what some others are saying about the book too.

"In Reimagining Church, Frank Viola is at the top of his game, showing a serene, soaring mastery of the theology of church as organism rather than organization."

- Leonard Sweet, author of Soul Tsunami, Soul Salsa, and 11

"Dissent is a gift to the Church. It is the imagination of the prophets that continually call us back to our identity as the peculiar people of God. May Viola's words challenge us to become the change that we want to see in the Church ... and not to settle for anything less than God's dream for Her."

- Shane Claiborne, author of The Irresistable Revolution, activist, and recovering sinner

"True to form, this book contains a thoroughly consistent critique of prevailing forms of church. However, in Reimagining Church, Frank Viola also presents a positive vision of what the church can become if we truly reembraced more organic, and less institutional, forms of church. This is a no holds barred prophetic vision for the church in the twenty-first Century."

- Alan Hirsch, author of The Forgotten Ways and The Shaping of Things To Come

"For those who are not threatened by the idea that church must change, Reimagining Church is an absolutely timely and much-needed perspective, delivering a solid biblical vision for the body of Christ. Using the entire scope of New Testament church life, Frank Viola lays out the core values and the essential principles that must form the foundation of life together as the body of Christ. The book delivers an exceptionally hopeful, visionary picture of all that church can and should be.

- Grace, blogging at kingdomgrace

"The body of Christ has been stifled by human traditions for far too long. Reimagining Church charts a fresh course for the church that recovers the simplicity of Christ and listens seriously to what the voice of the Great Shepherd is saying to His people."

- Jon Zens, editor, Searching Together and author of A Church Building Every

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
lately, i've found books, "blue like jazz", "velvet elvis", "searching for god knows what", "revolution", that discuss a more active, non-judgmental christianity. these books do not negate mega churches, but they do reinforce a post modern ideology many of us baby busters may be experiencing. i'm finding that my small group from fellowship of the woodlands lacks a certain depth. is anyone involved in the home church movement?

Hi, Bachanon. I know what you're talking about and would love to discuss it with you. If you'll get in touch, perhaps we can get together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi, Bachanon. I know what you're talking about and would love to discuss it with you. If you'll get in touch, perhaps we can get together.

awesome. message sent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...