the weblog of Alan Knox

Identifying with Jesus…

Posted by on Oct 23, 2006 in books, community | 2 comments

I’m currently reading several books concerning the Emerging Church, one of them being Emerging Churches: Creating Christian Community in Postmodern Culture by Eddie Gibbs and Ryan K. Bolger. In this book, Gibbs and Bolger interview fifty leaders in the Emerging Church conversation. Each chapter describes one of nine common practices among Emerging Churches.

Consider the following statements concerning the EC practice of “Identifying with Jesus”:

The gospel, as proclaimed by Jesus Christ and as understood by the early church, was always more than simply a message of personal salvation and, even more narrowly, the way to get to heaven when one dies. (p.48)

…95 percent of the nonchurched have a favorable view of Jesus, so Jesus is not the problem. It is the church they dislike, because they do not readily see the church living out his teachings. (p.48)

The church has no separate mission of its own. God already has a mission, and the church has the opportunity of participating in God’s mission. (p.52)

Clearly, the gospel is not restricted to a message giving an individual assurance about eternal destiny. It is minimally that, but it is much more, being concerned as much with life before death as with life after death. (p.54)

Any comments on these quotes?


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  1. 10-24-2006

    Hey Alan, I’m from S.C. but grew up in Rocky Mount…not far from Southeastern. I am currently planting a church in Charlotte. I completely resonate w/ these quotes. I am, however, struggling w/ what Jesus meant when he said, “the kingdom of God is near”. What is the good news in my particular situation (beyond personal salvation)? Finding “God’s Mission” in my particular location has been vexing at times. When I use words like “God’s mission” I want to be clear about what that mission is! Thanks for the quotes, and I’ll be back to visit!

  2. 10-24-2006

    Welcome, and thank you for your comments. I look forward to hearing how God answers your questions there in Charlotte.
    – Alan