I was flattered to see that the Lord has seen fit for Apprising Ministries to show up on the Wikipedia entry for Emergent Church Pastor Rob Bell:

As of Spring 2006, a new website was launched to “expose” Rob Bell’s beliefs on Christianity entitled “Apprising Ministries” [4]. Articles posted on the website denounce post-modernism as a whole with it’s “Emerging Elvis” Rob Bell.

Articles include:

• – Rob Bell Doubting God’s Word [5]
• – Rob Bell and His Emergent Cult [6]
• – Rob Bell a Very Poor Communicator[7]

On August 18th, 2006, political commentator Cody Dalton publicilly (sic) refuted the claims made on “Apprising Ministries” website on an internet blog. [8]

As I read this I noted a couple of inaccuracies such as AM was actually launched August 27, 2005 and I do cover a bit more of the Christian spectrum than just “exposing” Rob Bell. But who was I to quibble? Hey, I was just thankful to have this work reaching a wider audience. But then I looked closer and saw that “political commentator Cody Dalton” had apparently “refuted the claims made on ‘Apprising Ministries.’ ” I do note that as of 8/19/06 corrections were made and that bottom paragraph had vanished and now it simply says that AM is a website that “takes a critical position concerning many of the theological views of Rob Bell.”

But all of this had initially come about because I had suddenly begun seeing traffic coming to AM’s website from the Rob Bell entry on Wikipedia. And then when I followed the link back to Cody Dalton’s blog (which is now off-line) suddenly I was greeted again by an email I had just received here at AM that very morning! Now since Cody had felt comfortable enough to publicly post his letter to me, which was certainly fine by me, it seemed good in the Lord for me to also put it up here as well along with my reply. This way everyone will know exactly what had actually occurred.

—– Original Message —–
From: Cody Dalton
Sent: Friday, August 18, 2006 4:06 AM

Subject: A love letter from an emergent church member

Dear Rev. Silva,

I, as a follower of Christ, love you. I thank God for anybody that is inspired to live a better life through your teachings however, that seems somewhat difficult. Your entire “apprising ministries” website seems to be that of a man with a vendetta, muck-racking on other religions as to make his seem more “perfect”. How can followers of Jesus unite to accomplish a single task, if they cannot even respect one another’s beliefs? In Jesus’s day, it was common practice for rabbis and religious schlolars to spend days debating various aspects of the Torah… and when it was over they did not spend their time telling their students how bad the other rabbis’ ideas were, but they taught what they knew to be true.

I, like many others, am contacting you in love. I want to clarify the position of the emergent church movement, as from reading many of your comments and quotes from people like Rob Bell, you seem to either take ideas out of context, or put a perverted spin on them. Our idea as emergents is to focus less attention on traditions created in the 1970’s, and focus more attention on serving others. (Gal 5:13, 1Pt 4:10. Mt 20:26, 23:11, Mk 10:43) We believe the bible to be the inspired word of God, written by men who were in tune with God’s plan, and therefore had the ability to speak for him. (Mt 16:19, 18:18) We love God just as we love others, recognizing that these are the greatest commandments.(Mk 12: 30-31).

In reading your commentary, I rarely see actual factual questioning of the emergent church’s ideas, rather simply very general rants about your “suspected theology” they hold. For future reference, the leaders of the emergent church DO NOT believe in the great majority of beliefs that you accuse them of, just as the leaders of the former emergent church (“evangelicals”) do not believe in many beliefs the press and others accuse them of.

If you have any questions about the actual doctrine the emergent church follows, in the future, please refrain from “just guessing”, and consult the teachings of jesus. I am writing this letter hopefully to clear up some mis-understanding about the emergent chuch, and also to encourage you to research as to what teachings we actually follow. (hint: those of Jesus) I hope that in anything you do, it is done to serve a higher purpose, that of God’s, and I also hope peace and wisdom is always with you.

Your brother in Christ,


Dear Cody,

And I, as a follower of Christ called as a pastor-teacher, love you. After that I’m afraid we must agree to disagree because I do not see these issues the same way. It looks to me that this was written in a spirit of genuineness and I write back in the same.

If I were you I would probably see these issues the same way you do, but in my humble opinion only God is going to be able to change a mind. Therefore in following the Biblical injunction of 2 Timothy 2:24-25 I will leave this in the Lord’s hands.

For Christ’s Honor,

Pastor Ken Silva
Apprising Ministries