Archive for August 6th, 2007

Again, we have an example of the watch doggies’ complete inability to understand anyone outside of their own context. First, a quote from McLaren:

“I am an atheist when it comes to the view of the chosen few, who judge and condemn all who differ (sic) them.”

Now, how would you interpret that view? Perhaps that McLaren doesn’t believe in the kind of God that the watch doggies claim is out there? The kind of God that condemns people to hell for not using organs in worship, and who expects his followers to act like complete jerks at all times? Would that seem reasonable? I think so.

Instead this interpretation is offered up:

Presumably he would be referring to those who point to the Scriptures and say, “Wait a minute, Brian! How can you not believe in hell when Jesus spoke so often of a literal place where the fire is never quenched?”

What? Talk about a non-sequitur. Where do you get that at all?

Are we even dealing with people who are capable of understanding anyone other than someone who thinks exactly like them? The more I observe them in their natural habitat, the more I doubt it.

More evidence that the watchdoggies have no idea what they’re talking and writing about.

In a small way I do kind of feel sorry for apologists, such as they are, for the Emergent Church when they have to defend Brian McLaren and his deep skybala. For you see, McLaren is beyond question a leading theological Guru in the emerging church, and when he does stuff like you’ll witness below it has just got to be like a living nightmare for guys like Dan Kimball and Erwin McManus. Because you don’t get to go emerging without your McLaren.

Uh…. what? Emerging/emergent Christians aren’t a group rallying around an individual. While McLaren was a big part of bringing emerging/emergent ideas into the mainstream, he’s not the guy who founded it, invented it, or is so fundamental to it that if he calls it quits the whole thing comes down. For those that have been paying attention McLaren has become, really, a marginalized figure, at least compared to what he once was. My feeling is that shortly after A Generous Orthodoxy (coincidently the same time he left his position at Cedar Ridge) he became far more of a figure head than someone who is actually directing and moving the ideas of the emergent/emerging church.

But of course the watchdoggies don’t really understand anything other than themselves, so when they write something incredibly stupid like, “you don’t get to go emerging without your McLaren” we shouldn’t really be surprised.

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We’ve pointed out in the past that it seems like the watch doggies out there try to be holier than God, now it looks like they’re more Puritan than the Puritans were.

Our beloved Puritan ancestors may have been merrier than we might suspect. In 1620, the Mayflower had intended to land in Virginia or New York. But after two months at sea, the provisions were running out. Plymouth was a second, but necessary choice. As William Bradford wrote in his “History of Plimouth Plantation”: “We could not take much time for further search, our victuals being much spent, especially beere.” Once they landed, building a brewery became a top priority. The Pilgrims had a miserable few months with no beer. Soon enough they were making beer from barley, hops, birch bark, spruce and corn (the latter a contribution from the Natives). Hard liquor of all kinds was consumed by the men. Women and children drank hard cider and “small beer”. Drinking to drunkeness was discouraged. But they thought it superior than drinking the risky water from wells and streams. The Puritans used the Geneva Bible which had fallen out of favor with the royalty because of its anti-aristocratic marginalia. The King James version corrected the errors, but the Puritans refused to use it. The Pilgrims have a reputation for being miserly. In fact, their insistence that everyone work and no one should live off the labor of another had brought disfavor in England. Their economic views were “too Catholick” for English of the day. The Pilgrims had adopted the medieval Catholic principles of “fair price” and “just wages”. New ministers were saluted with “ordination beer” to celebrate the event.

When John Harvard established his College in 1636, he insisted that an adequate brewhouse be built: one that could satisfy the needs of both the students and the faculty. In the 1700s, the courthouse of choice was the local tavern. Judge, jury, lawyers and accused would all partake liberally. (There is a rumor that US Courthouses close down business at 4:30 PM because the taverns open at 5 PM. I can’t confirm that this is true, though.) So, Sir Peter, enjoy our Puritan customs: go out on the beach and have a beer or two. (Just don’t drink so much you can’t find your way home.)

Oh my! Beer, hard liquor, Catholicism and capitalism. If the Puritans were around to speak for themselves today, do you think they’d make the watch doggies’ blogroll? I suspect not. In fact I think after reading all that the watch doggies would put together some sort of post about the Emergent, Neo-Liberal, Pelagian, Roman Anti-Christ, Cult of the Puritans. But since they can re-invent the past in their own image they quote our lovely, beer imbibing, fun loving Puritan brothers:

“Whatever religion or doctrine condones or makes allowances for sin is not of Christ. The Doctrine of Christ everywhere teaches self-denial and mortification of worldliness and sin. The whole stream of the gospel runs against those things. Scripture emphasizes the ‘holy’ and the ‘heavenly’ (not the sinful and the worldly). The true gospel has not even the slightest tendency to extol corrupt nature, or feed it’s pride by magnifying it’s freedom and power. And it rejects everything that undermines or obscures the merit of Christ, or tries to give any credit to man, in any way. And it certainly never makes the death of Christ a cloak to cover sin, but rather it always speaks of it as an instrument that destroys it!”

Here, we see, yet again an example of the complete and total inability of the watch doggies to understand anything outside of their own context. They see a quote from a Puritan like the one above and assume that he would be on board with the watch doggies peculiar brand of “holiness”. There is absolutely no awareness that its possible to agree with the above quote and to disagree with the watch doggies, either in doctrine, the way that doctrine is expressed, or in lifestyle.

Whatever it is that compels the watch doggies to lash out at everyone who is not exactly like them also compels them to re-define their heroes of the past.

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