Beyond Business-as-Usual Christianity

Brian McLaren talks about hell, the emerging church, and seeker Christians who are fed up with traditional Christianity.


08/17/2012 12:07:54 PM

McLaren makes a good point when he says that we need to ‘stop being content as members of the Christian religion and actually aspire to start living in the way of Jesus.’ Indeed, Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, tells us to be imitators of God. Jesus did spend time with sinners, tax-collectors, prostitutes; and so must we embrace all of society in His name. However, Jesus did not merely hang out with them and leave them as they were; His intent was to heal them, to change them. Jesus did not condemn the adulterous woman, but He did tell her to go and sin no more. He confronted sin. McLaren wants to be inclusive. Jesus was inclusive in that He made Himself available to all who were seeking. However, His bottom line was very exclusive. He said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father but through Me.” If we are to live in the way of Jesus, we also need to embrace all who are seeking; but we are not to merely hang out with them and leave them as they are. They need to understand the exclusivity of the kingdom of God. Jesus is the ONLY way to God the Father.


03/09/2006 06:40:16 PM

Solidstand, Whether you support McLaren or not, such attacks are not in line with Jesus' heart. Please be considerate and compassionate. And please read the books--it's dangerous to judge even Jesus by a sliced quote.


10/14/2005 05:23:03 PM

Dear Gini: God doesnt tell people to do things that the bible forbids. Satan does that. Gods word is extremely important, and to expect God to remain faithful to consistently teach and speak the same things is the heart of who God is. "he has no shadow of turning, no variableness." "the promises of God are not yea and nay, but yea and amen". While your attempting to be spiritual, you are simultaneously voiding the Word of God by inventing scenarios about how God treats his Word and his people that are inconsistent with his own nature. Its more important for you to know Gods word, rather than invent arguments for doing your own thing and thinking you are spiritual for doing them. Solid


10/14/2005 03:18:44 PM

Dear Gini: What basis do you have for making a difference in the bible and the living word of God? What basis do you have for rejecting the new testament? What basis do you have to believe God will say one thing and then tell someone individually something different from the Apostles of Jesus Christ? You seem to be stumbling over the whole new testament, and are now willing to make your own 'laws' along the way? Solid


10/13/2005 01:38:04 PM

SolidStand, Interesting that you believe no pastor should ever go beyond "biblical parameters" --- even if God tells him or her to? Should we really put those books that we have compiled and called "the Holy Bible" above the LIVING Word of God? Jesus never said he'd send a New Testament. Jesus said he'd send us a holy spirit. If God told you something that contradicted the Bible, would you send God away in favor of your that book/idol? It's happened before. Peter was told to do something that contradicted scripture ("Kill and eat" the unclean food). Jesus - God in our presence! - was questioned and feared because he contradicted the prevailing views of scripture (working on the sabbath!?!) Will you be next?


10/06/2005 01:45:57 PM

Dan represents someone working in a church structure that did not have much room for diversity and yet he began to stretch outside of those parameters. the article said. Its important to see what Brian didnt say.. He said "parameters" but he reasons biblical parameters. He was on trial for going beyond the bible. That is the trial every heretic will face in godly assemblies and in the face of God himself on judgment day. Brian is simply casting himself in the role of 'struggling pastor'. He needs to cast himself in the role of repentant pastor and believer of the truth. We shall see in the future whether he brings forth bad fruit and lead his readers into a Christless religious experience which he will name "emergent church christianity". Solid


10/06/2005 01:39:01 PM

Dear Gottheword: The essentials of the Christian faith are non-negotiable. Mclaren not only negotiates but, dismisses them wholesale for a 'new conversation' which removes the necessity of Christ's sacrifice because He believes OTHER ways to God are present and should be used. His doctrine of judgment is simply a concoction of his own and does no honor to the God of the bible. I therefore consider Mclaren to be no new thinker but an old repeater of worn out heresies which he has repackaged for this modern age of religious people. His doctrine is false, his conclusions are unbiblical. His books are bird cage liner at best. I havent read his books, but the excerpts alone give enough reason to clean the bird cage. Solid


10/02/2005 04:20:14 PM

SOLID - I am interested in this statement, could you elaborate on your thoughts please? "Mclarens diveristy is compromise not differences. This is just another old worn attempt at bringing compromise and corruption to Christianity." Thanks gottheWord


09/30/2005 10:57:24 AM

Reading over these posts leads me to believe very few if any have done more than 5 minutes of serious study in the bible. But what is said sure SOUNDS like Christian jargon...but thats the real rub its just jargon and most likely will spit in Christ's face if they are asked to live as he commands. Solid


09/30/2005 10:50:45 AM

emerger:If a person loves me he will love my doctrine, its mine because I have developed it from numerous sources. Fundy: Are you saying that you cant be loved for your person without your doctrine which I reject? Emerger: Yes I am saying that you are not a good christian like me if you dont agree with me. Fundy: Who told you that? Emerger: I have come to believe that fundies are an enemy to my faith, so in order to get them to love me, they must conceed to my belief platform. Fundy: But what if your platform differs from the bible? Emerger: I dont use the bible as my final source, so dont push it down my throat. Fundy: Did you realize you are what you hate? Emerger: What? Fundy: An opinionated zealot, youve just changed the name and added your own dogmas. Solid


09/30/2005 10:38:55 AM

Mclarens diveristy is compromise not differences. This is just another old worn attempt at bringing compromise and corruption to Christianity. Solid


09/28/2005 01:21:49 AM

If there were more Christian leaders like Brian McLaren, there might actually be hope for Christianity to remain relevant in the 21st century. I don't think the fundamentalists realize how many people they are actually driving away from the faith with their mean-spirited, punitive, judgemental, "you're-either-with-us-or-you're-gonna-burn-in-hell" attitudes. They drove me away, that's for sure. If being a "good Christian" means I have to be an ill-tempered, nagging shrew who is (to borrow McLaren's words) "pro- war, anti-poor and pro-judgement," forget it, I'm not interested.


09/26/2005 05:35:46 PM

Fear is not the way to convence or convict anyone of the validity of The Way. It may be true that Christianity is the most accepted name by which our beliefe is known but it was not untill Antioc that believers were called Christians. We were originally called followers of The Way. Over the years Christianity has aquired a most unfortunate connotation that is why I choose to be known as a follower of The Way. In John 14:6 Jesus does say that He is the Way...., so I don't think that is much of a depature. As far as the doctrine of Hell is concerned Jesus taught more about hell than any other single doctrine. Most of His parables illuminated the after life and/or hell. It really doesn't matter if you believe in it or not. Hell's existance is not predicated on your beliefe.


09/23/2005 07:00:34 PM

Jesus showed love and compassion,and said lovingly follow me.And people followed.Because they seen a caring ,loving,compassionate person,that there was more to meet the eye.Who would'nt follow love instead of hate? Churches,The first was the burning bush,Right? Then tents,or being housed by someone,as a guest and having a meeting as the last supper,or on a mount,listening to parrables by Jesus.Then people started making rock temples to kneel at and praise God.And started building churches.But along the way,hate came into pressuring people.Pushing them into tithes,pushing them into charities or works.Someone starting a new church,because they didn't like how the other was. We need love and compassion of Christ in spreading the gospel.We need love ,in how we handle others we are shepperding to our faith. we need people to stand up in church and say. this is not the way it should be ,if it doesn't follow scripture.


09/23/2005 06:22:38 PM

I've not read Mclarens book,but perhaps I will. Man has took a honouring faith in the way they prayed to God.And they have brought anger into it over the centuries.Sharing faith is one thing,but pushing people into religion is not right.I had a friend years ago.His parents pushed and pushed him to go to church.So to pease them ,he joined a church.Went forward and accepted God.But did he really? He went for awhile then he gradually started falling backwerds from the faith.He told me,the deacons kept pushing him.Kept telling him God wants more from you.They scared him out of the church.And scared Him away from God. Who will stand in that judgement?According to scripture we are to spread the Gospel.But we are to do so caringly and with love!And so many don't,they want to push and show hate because of the sin in your life.If your into drugs,they want to hate you,call you names, call the cops.And still say God loves you, and wants you to join us.


09/22/2005 10:05:12 PM

The theory of Hell being like most Christains believe is very foolish. Apostle Paul wrote 13 letters in the New Testament, was the Apostle to the Gentiles & never mentioned the word Hell one time. Hell is real but you don't have to die to be a partaker.


09/21/2005 05:54:26 PM

Brian McLaren will be one of the individuals to make Christianity relevant for thinking people in the 21st century. I love his books.