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“What Does the Emergent Church Look Like?”
by Art Sadlier   
December 1st, 2008

In our lifetime we have witnessed the transition from the Church of Philadelphia to the Church of Laodicea. According to scripture the Laodicean Church is an unsaved church. We see the Lord outside the church knocking to enter in. We also see the Lord vomiting the Laodiceans out of His mouth. The picture also indicates that Laodicea has the outward appearance of a real church with great affluence and influence. The similarity between the present day Evangelical Church and Laodicea are undeniable.

This transition began in 1948 with the introduction of New Evangelicalism. New Evangelicalism produced Ecumenical Evangelism, the Church Growth Movement, the Market Driven, the User Friendly Church and the Purpose Driven Church. The philosophy and operating principles behind New Evangelicalism are:

  1. “The cessation of contending for the Faith”, be nice and be tolerant.
  2. “Be ready to dialogue with Liberals”.
  3. “Refuse to Separate from error”, if a man is your brother, be tolerant of his ideas and do not separate from him. (Do not separate from Liberals or New Evangelicals)
  4. "Win the approval of the world"

The result is a church that is designed to bring the world into the church, to make the unsaved feel at home by preaching easy-believism, mental assent, a powerless gospel that does not save. Fill the church with pseudo Christians and entertain them to keep them coming back.

We weep to see almost the entire Evangelical church being swept into apostasy.

Now another great transition is underway, the transition from Laodicea to the Emergent Church. The Emergent church is the capstone of the last days apostasy; it is the vehicle to draw Evangelicalism into the Harlot Church of Revelation 17.

Today exciting conferences are being held to expose evangelicals to the Emergent Church and evangelicals are crowding in to these conferences. It’s something new and exciting for undiscerning people who want to walk the easy road instead of the Calvary road.

The Emergent Church is nothing less than apostasy; let me give you some statements by Emergent leaders.

Emergent leader Samir Selmanovic has stated, “The emerging church movement has come to believe that the ultimate context of the spiritual aspirations of a follower of Jesus Christ is not Christianity but rather the kingdom of God…Is Christianity the only religion that understands the true meaning of life? Or does God place his truth in others too? The gospel is not our gospel, but the gospel of the kingdom of God, and what belongs to the kingdom of God cannot be hijacked by Christianity”

It is obvious that this is apostasy designed for a world church.

Another Emergent leader, Brian McLaren, writes, “We don’t know what the gospel is”. In the book, “The Secret Message of Jesus: Uncovering the Truth that Could Change Everything”, McLaren states that he believes that the church has never understood the message of Jesus. Very early, he says, the church twisted what Jesus taught into a gospel of “justification by grace through faith, the free gift of salvation. Christ being a substitutionary sacrifice for sin”.

Such a statement is a total rejection of the gospel. Then he goes on to lay the groundwork for a world church.

He says, “Jesus seems to say, the kingdom of God doesn’t need to wait until something else happens. No it is available and among you now…invite people of all nations, races, classes and religions to participate in this network of dynamic, interactive relationships with God and all God’s creation!”

He has removed the gospel and brought the whole world into the church. The amazing thing is that many Evangelicals cannot see that this is total apostasy.

Dr. Bill Goetz gives a series of indicators by which you can tell if the Emergent is creeping into your church.

  1. Any suggestion by leadership that the Bible is not the final authority for all questions of spiritual life and faith.
  2. The growing emphasis on really knowing God through the kind of “spiritual formation” which includes “the silence” or contemplative prayer.
  3. Favorable focus on the teachings of the ancient mystics.
  4. Any degree of dialogue with non-Christian religions.
  5. Excessive “Kingdom talk”, especially Christians bringing in the kingdom through their own efforts.

It is time to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints! It is time to come out of apostate Christianity!

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