Saturday, January 08, 2005

Steve Camp, Brian McLaren, & Bob Robinson

Bob Robinson has engaged Steve Camp concerning his critique of Brian McLaren's Generous Orthodoxy.


Robbymac said...

Steve Camp is part of John F. MacArthur's church, which probably explains the belittling, sarcastic, and harshness of his writing style. He's just emulating MacArthur's style of preaching and writing. Has anyone ever read a book by MacArthur that WASN'T totally flaming anyone who didn't agree with him.

It's also worth noting, as Bob points out, that MacArthur/Camp (and other self-appointed guardians of truth) make a regular habit of attacking other Christians via book-writing (and radio ministry in MacArthur's case) without (A) talking to the very people they're so vigorously attacking, or (B) getting their facts straight (because most of their followers are Berean enough to check on the veracity of what they've just heard/read).

If this is indicative of the kind of critiques that emergent is facing, then I'm deeply disappointed. A well-researched, but loving, critique is helpful and life-giving. These kind of attacks do absolutely no good at all but provide blog-fodder, and we might be best to consider Titus 3:9 as a fitting response: "But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless."

DANG, but this reminds me of what was happening in the Vineyard back in the early 90's!

JSV said...

I’ve sat under John MacArthur (Grace Community Church) for MANY years. I’ve also attended seminary with a similar “family feel” to that of GCC. Recently, I’ve attended a sister church to GCC.

All said, I feel John is one of the finest expositors from the Sunday exegetical model of preaching and teaching. However, the critique offered above echoes real truth from my experience. There seems to be a, “We are in the right and need to let everyone know they are not” attitude. This posture allows those who attend this (these type of) church(s) to feel very confident and secure in this form of very strong leadership.

The results (fruit) of all this? My experience for fifteen year is this—these types of churches are learning centers that hardly reflect a “community church.” There is coldness when trying to relate to a body who so ardently strives to always be “right.”

Sadly, the weekly bible studies are little more than mini-classes on a particular passage of the bible (welcome, sing three songs, introductions, sermon, sing three songs, closing prayer..then snacks). That’s the relational depth in a nutshell. Now, multiply that by fifteen years and where will you be? Really smart and really shallow.

Really smart and really shallow? How would you deal with someone with an eating disorder? Tell them they are in sin and need to repent. Get the idea?

Larry Crabb is the Brian McLaren in this circle. He gets RAILED by them. I once attended a seminar critiquing Larry’s work by a conservative evangelical church. It was hard stuff and my buddy approached the speaker and said this; “If Larry was here, a brother in the Lord, sitting in this room, would you have said the harsh things abut him in person as you did today?” He stumbled a bit…gripped himself in front of his peers, and in an insecure mask of self-confidence said, “YES…yes I would!”

There ya go.