A while back we began this new feature called “AM Mailbag.” Time constraints kept me from developing the category further until now. In this area we give a voice to readers in order to open up a chance for others to see some of the things God is doing through Apprising Ministries. It also shows the way our Great Shepherd is using this small labor in Christ to touch lives and to inform people as well.

If you would like to testify as to what God is doing with you through AM you are certainly encouraged to write and share it with me. Please know that all letters that appear here are printed with the permission of the authors. What follows came in response to my article Southern Baptist Convention Embracing Gnostic Mysticism.

In this encouraging letter we hear from an impressive young senior pastor that I have personally had the privilege of speaking with. He shares here how the Lord led him away from the trappings of the Emergent Church and deeper into the historic orthodox Christian faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.

Thanks for the encouragement. I am not aware of Red Moon Rising. I am very concerned that in the SBC Brian McLaren, Rob Bell, and Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz is the rage on some of our seminary campuses) are being embraced without understanding the theological underpinnings these men expound. I am a former youth pastor who was very enticed by Youth Specialties to embrace many of these things.

I bought a lot of this stuff hook, line, and sinker—such as the Labyrinths, the concepts in Dan Kimball’s The Emerging Church and began to utilize these things in my youth ministry. I was strongly convicted by the Holy Spirit of the danger of this and quickly distanced myself from this movement. Instead of doing all of the gimmicks, labyrinths, candles, and postmodern trendy things that Group and Youth Specialties were telling me to do, I delved deeply into the doctrines of grace and just did in-depth teaching on the book of Galatians and taught my students the 5 Solas of the Reformation as a way to ground them in theology.

The Lord faithfully guided me as I made this transformation from becoming an emergent groupie to a discerning Reformed young pastor. Now I am a senior pastor at a mid-sized church and I am leading our people to embrace theology and will probably do a Wednesday night discipleship seminar on the dangers facing the evangelical church—Islam, Emergent Church, issues of bioethics, Homosexuality, and liberalism. Both my former youth group and adult volunteers have grown tremendously through the simple theological approach of giving students the unadulterated word and grounding them in theology.

Many our now in college and thank me for getting them prepared to face the challenges on their campuses. I am thirty-something and a prime target of this emergent movement and it grieves me that many of my contemporaries and friends who have graduated or are still in seminary are embracing these things. But I do see some encouragement in this, in that there are many young pastors and youth pastors who are not buying into the Purpose Driven or Emergent movements. I went to the Together for the Gospel conference back in April in Louisville with Al Mohler, Mark Dever, John Piper, and John McArthur and the overwhelming majority there were in their 20’s and 30’s.

I thank you for your website that allows me as a pastor to discern the issues we are facing and how to shepherd my flock and protect them from false doctrine. Let us continue to pray that the younger generation will embrace the inerrancy of Scripture, the substitutionary atonement of Christ, and the exclusiveness of Jesus alone as the only way to salvation, and that our methodologies would come from informed Biblical theology not through pragmatism, consumerism, mysticism, gnosticism, or revivalism.

In Christ,

Reformed and Emergent Free