“For my eyes are on all their ways. They are not hidden from me, nor is their iniquity concealed from my eyes. But first I will doubly repay their iniquity and their sin, because they have polluted my land with the carcasses of their detestable idols, and have filled my inheritance with their abominations.” (Jeremiah 16:17-18)

Under The Big Top Of The Emerging Church 2.0

Apprising Ministries made you aware e.g. in Doug Pagitt And The Emerging Church Gay Agenda there’s a growing acceptance within evangelicalism that the deviant and sinful lifestyle of having sexual relations with another of the same sex, i.e homosexuality, is a viable one for the regenerated Christian; and further, the EC is already making acceptance of this sin of sexual immorality for the Christian a prime hot-button issue within the church visible. So I’ll note again that both the heretical quasi-universalist Emerging Church pastor Doug Pagitt, who heads the Emergent Solomon’s Porch, and his equally heretical “theologian in residence” Tony Jones affirm that the practice of homosexuality is acceptable for the Christian, as you can see in Doug Pagitt, The Emerging Church, And Affirming Homosexuality and Emergence Christianity Theologian Tony Jones And His Unrepentant Homosexual Christians.

Ok, now some may see this as a sign of the beginning of the Apocalypse, but I actually agree with Emerging Church guru Brian McLaren when he says, “In my view, reports of the conversation’s demise are greatly exaggerated. In some cases, they represent wishful thinking; in other cases, a limited frame of reference.” And your key to what’s happening is found in what he says next “what we call ‘the emergent conversation’ may in fact be chapter 3 or 7 or 123 of a much longer storyline.”[1] It’s important to realize that the Emergent Church was first and foremost a full-on attack against the original cult of liberalism aka modern theology; and its “big tent” version of Progressive Christianity, a Liberalism 2.0 sometimes referred to as Emergence Christianity, has won out. This brings us to an upcoming EC conference called Big Tent Christianity: Being and Becoming the Church (BTC).

Coming up this Wedenesday and Thursday, BTC provides us with a vivid example that the sinfully ecumenical neo-liberal cult of the Emerging Church is far from dead. The truth is, it’s been upgraded to the Emerging Church 2.0 and is even now cobbling together its new postmodern version of Progressive Christian theology through the work of progressive theologians like Dr. Philip Clayton, whom I’ve introduced you to e.g. in Philip Clayton With “Big Tent” Christianity In The Emerging Church, and his uber-liberal theologian friend Harvey Cox. In fact Dr. Clayton’s speaking about BTC with Brian McLaren in the video below, as well as in the following, when he asks and then postulates:

Does the exchange [between liberals and evangelicals] make me worry that the public conference on “Big Tent Christianity” that we’re planning for Raleigh, NC on September 8-9 is a mistake? No, it seems even more urgent than before to invite the combatants to lay down their weapons and to look for something deeper and more enduring in Jesus’ call to the kingdom of God. (Online source)

When we examine the roster of teachers for BTC we get another indication that the Emergent Church is far from dying as it’s a veritible who’s who from around the EC. We find both Clayton and McLaren on “Today’s “Big Tent”: Being and Becoming the Church”; Red Letter Christian and mainline progressive historian Diana Butler Bass with Phyllis Tickle, the Empress of Emergence, to teach us “Transcending Left/Right Thinking.”; this is critical for them to be able to take people into their postmodern Wonderland of Humpty Dumpty language. Rounding out the roster for the BTC apostasia-palooza will be progressive/liberal theologians Tony Jones and Harvey Cox on “Frontier Thinking of Big Tent”, then there’s Greg Boyd, a leading proponent of the heresy Open Theism; oddly enough he’s teaching ”Tell the Good News for the Future,” when his god doesn’t even know it.

“Participants also include” head of the EC OOZE Spencer Burke, a Christian universalist; also on hand will be Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, who’s general secretary of the Reformed Church in America and a proponent of corrupt Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism, along with EC pastor Doug Pagitt. Then finally, there’s gay-affirming EC “pastor” Jay Bakker who’ll be sharing his mythology about “Ministry with Those in the Margins”; Bakker may be in the margins, but he’s not in actual Christian ministry. You might remember I told you before in Meet Outlaw Preachers that Bakker heads up a rather rapscallion, and largely Biblically illiterate bunch, who have crowned themselves Outlaw Preachers; and in Jay Bakker Reflects The Sad Condition Of The Visible Church I explained that he’s also tip of the spear for the warped and toxic gay agenda being actively advanced by the EC 2.0 right now.

This is the backdrop against which you’ll better see what I’m about to show you concerning this silly circus “big tent” of pseudo Christianity. The BTC Twitter account would tweet:

(Online source)

Not too long afterward Tripp Fuller tweeted: 

(Online source)

When Your Tent Becomes So Big That It Turns Out To Be Meaningless

In The Emerging Church And Progressive Christian Theology After Google I showed you that Fuller is part of the Transforming Theology network team of Philip Clayton, which is putting on heresy-fest BTC. What they wanted us to see is Big Tent conference in Raleigh hopes to bridge political divide, which is a short story byYonat Shimronm staff writer for  The News & Observer of Raleigh, NC. Shimronm begins:

Imagine Pat Robertson, champion of the Christian right, and retired Episcopal Bishop John Shelby Spong, bad boy of the Christian left, coming together for a hug. That unlikely scenario is exactly what Philip Clayton, a theologian at Claremont School of Theology in Claremont, Calif., called for in a video clip posted to YouTube recently. Clayton is among a group of theologians eager to move beyond the culture wars that have pitted the Christian right and left for so long. His challenge to the two aging leaders – part stunt, part provocation – was a way of calling attention to the way Christianity has become bitterly polarized.

That polarization is turn-off to a younger generation not as invested in the old battles. “Generation X and the Millennials are fed up with the disputes that define American church today,” Clayton said. “They want to talk about the Gospels; what Jesus taught and did.” (Online source)

As someone whose job it is to monitor Intel concerning the church in the still developing mission field of online apologetics and discernment ministry I’ll offer that here’s where their mind-numbing practice of Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism (CSM) has seemingly shorted out their critical thinking skills. What’s happened is that with this spurious CSM, which entered evangelicalism under the guise of so-called Spiritual Formation ala Living Spiritual Teacher and Quaker mystic Richard Foster and his trusty spiritual twin Dallas Willard, we’re now dealing with a new form of Gnosticism. As I pointed out recently in Mysticism And Postmodernism, The Emerging Church And Evangelicalism practitioners of CSM—such as rock star of the EC Rob Bell—are functioning as the neo-Gnostic “initiated” and “enlightened” ones who’re just a little bit better than the average Christian because of their “spiritual disciplines.”

The crown jewel of CSM is a form of meditation in an altered state of consciousness known as Contemplative/Centering Prayer (CCP); i.e. it’s transcendental meditation lightly sprayed with Christian terminology, which they’ll often refer to as practicing “silence and solitude.” There’s a couple of key things you’ll need to realize before you’ll understand why those perpetrating what, when all and said and done, is postmodern progressive/liberal theology—not really all that much different from original liberalism—actually believe that Pat Robertson and John Shelby Spong are both Christians. First, through practicing CCP they feel as if they are “transformed,” in much the same way the Buddhist would speak of “enlightenment” (satori), and so their perception of reality has been enhanced. In fact it has been changed; but not in a positive manner, instead they’ve opened themselves to spiritual deception. 

Leaving this aside, for now, that’s why these postmodern practitioners of CSM become so enamoured with the alogical, and paradoxical, irrational philosophy of spiritually empty Eastern religions; and because of their delusion—where they are actually losing touch with reality—you’ll hear them say foolish things like: “We need to move beyond belief and words, which is why I read the Bible more than literally.” God the Holy Spirit, and it doesn’t get any more real than Him, put it for us this way — Claiming to be wise, they became fools (Roman 1:22). If you’ve ever wondered how such as these will say they affirm the historic creeds, and yet also embrace as Christian someone like Spong who doesn’t, now you know: They are new Gnostics who believe they have discovered through their mysticism what Scripture, the Creeds, etc. *wink* really mean; i.e. the more than literal understanding as they move past mere belief.

Should the Lord allow time, using the Apostle’s Creed I’ll show you how these neo-Gnostics “affirm” it without actually believing what the words within mean in their plainest historical-grammatical sense. This is precisely what so many of them are doing with the texts of the Bible as well; simply put, following the exact same methodology as their evil forebears in the cult of liberalism, they are still using the words of the historic, orthodox, Christian faith. However, while the terminology sounds the same, the meanings have been surgically removed and the hollow shell then stuffed with entirely new meanings. As to the You Tube stunt re. Robertson and Spong; I said before, while I am no fan of Pat Robertson in any way, at last check he does still profess orthodoxy concerning the Person and Nature of Christ Jesus of Nazareth—God the Son, e.g. His Deity, His Virgin Birth, His vicarious substitutionary atonement, etc.

There I would be in agreement with Robertson concerning these cardinal, non-negotiable, doctrines even though I disagree with him regarding many secondary ones. However on the other hand, someone like John Shelby Spong denies every cardinal doctrine concerning Christ; as does, for example, Living Spiritual Teacher and Progessive Christian scholar Marcus Borg. As simply as I can put it: Men like John Shelby Spong and Marcus Borg are unbelievers because the “Jesus” they believe in does not even exist; by consciously rejecting Who Jesus actually is, such as these remain dead in their sins (c.f. John 8:24), and are not in the Body of Christ to begin with. God Himself has already told us in e.g. Matthew 7:13-14, in no uncertain terms, that the gate is narrow; so there’s no such thing as this mythicial man-pleasing big tent wished for by the neo-liberal cult of the Emerging Church in the first place.

O, Clayton does sound good at first as he expresses his man-centered concern re. “Generation X and the Millennials” who supposedly “are fed up with the disputes that define American church today.” That many of these disputes actually can involve non-essentials I do have some empathy; however, when I finish this up next time, I’ll show you that these issues do involve cardinal doctrines, which cast their shadow over these disputes. In other words, one has to surrender a non-negotiable doctrine in order to make a given conflict go away. And the example I just used above forms the very heart of the matter for the genuine Christian, and for the church visible because Clayton opines, “They want to talk about the Gospels; what Jesus taught and did.” Fair enough Philip Clayton; let’s assume they do. Then my question now becomes: While we discuss what He taught and did, which Jesus are we going to be talking about?


1., accessed 9/6/10.

See also: