The New Christians

The New Christians

Comment(s) of the Weekend

Paul asks,

Hey does Tony ever post replies to the comments. I’m a long time lurker
here at his blog and I notice he doesn’t really reply to criticism of
his opinions here. What’s up with that?

Cody replies,


These are just some options for why Tony doesn’t comment back:

1. Perhaps he does. When we post, we are asked for an e-mail
address. Perhaps Tony perceives that some people like to leave comments
in order to start a public row. Maybe Tony chooses not to acquiesce to
their desire to start a fight in public, and instead addresses their
criticisms through e-mail. That way, people cannot come by and pick
fights for picking fights sake, because Tony does not allow that to


2. Maybe Tony likes to merely observe conversations. Since he is the
originator of the post, we already know where he stands. Chances are
Tony is not going to change anyone’s mind who disagrees with him, at
least not in this kind of setting. So instead, Tony sits back and
observes our conversations and interactions with each other unfold, and
we get the benefit of thinking these things through and wrestling with
the implications on our own end.

3. This goes along with number 1, but maybe Tony chooses not to
engage with those who are attempting to be combative. I haven’t
“lurked” around here long enough to see whether he seems to engage more
with those who present their differing opinions in a more respectful
manner than he does with those who seem to want to correct him, because
they have to be right and he has to be wrong.


4. Maybe he’s busier than we think he is?

There could be lots of other reasons, I’m sure.

Cody’s pretty much on the money. I have, for years, avoided getting involved in the comment section of my blog. I read all comments, and I often learn from the comments.  And my Bnet editors encourage me to respond in the comment section because it brings people back to the site and, thus, increases traffic.  But I rarely do.  Here’s why:

1) I simply don’t have time.  I already spend WAY more time blogging than I should, vis a vis what I get paid to blog.

2) I say what I want to say in the blog post proper.

But trust me, the comments that you all leave do affect my thinking and my blogging.  That’s why I started “Comment of the Day” — to highlight the thoughtful comments that you leave.  And comments often provoke future blog posts or even series.

So, keep the comments coming.  And I will try to occasionally dive in and mix it up with you in the comment section!

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posted March 13, 2009 at 11:23 pm

OK, I have sat thru a forum/Q&A lead by Tony and I have spent time listening to “emergent” leaders and critcs acusing/condemning. And, I have now see several interview/debates where an emergent is in the same venue as an evangelical/mainliner/conservative/or whatever… and here is the impression I get.
I feel like I’m watching Jesus and Nicodemus in John 3 going at it and not really connection because they are using terms in different ways and have such a profoundly different view point that they might as well be speaking a different language. I can imagine confused looks and a bunch of “huh’s?”.
I self identify and a neo-Wesleyan evangelical and for the most part, I am baffled at what passes for Evangelism and even “Orthodoxy” today. I have often wondered if terms like “Christ” and “Salvation” has gotten so narrowly defined over the centuries that their original meaning (and usefulness) has not been gutted.
Finally, I am bemused at the intensity of the “counter-attack” that all things “emergent” is receiving. I have often taught and do believe that someone who is “comfortable” with their truth claims (sic. “beliefs”) never has to shout them. If there is any wisdom to be said about “truth”, it is that “truth” never has to be defended, only discovered and honored by being lived.
Keep talking, maybe emergents and the rest of the body of Christ can find a common language and start a real dialogue…
the best,

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