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Feb 21, 2006

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Denis Hancock

[As soon as I saw this, I posted a short article on The Reformed Angler directing people over here. I hope all 2-3 of my loyal readers will join in.]

I appreciate Green's organization of the different approaches to engaging the political system. I would gravitate toward the "regularized politics" option, since the other two represent (for me, at least) two poles that are not very effective.

Movement politics, all too often, attracts people who I'd rather not have representing the "evangelical" point of view. I won't name names, but I think people can come up with a list on their own...

Quiescent politics is ineffective for the obvious reason, but more than that, we ARE called to engage with those who establish public policy. Isaiah 10:1-2 has some harsh things to say to those who make unjust laws. Jeremiah urged the people to seek the "peace and prosperity" of the city where the Jews were carried into exile (Jeremiah 29:4-7).

I was interested to see Falwell's opinion from 1965 regarding his view then of what he was called to do. I was also unaware of the internecine conflicts that fragmented the evangelical community.

I am about halfway through the book, and it provides a lot to consider.

Thanks for hosting this, and I look forward to the discussions.

Michael Kruse

Thanks Denis. I too like the framework he develops here. In later essays, authors talk about politics being "down-stream." Politics generaly tends to enact what has already become the majority view. Changing culture requires "up-stream" work. I think this is a "both and" not "either or" proposition. Like you, I think I lean toward the regularized approach although I can point to times in my life where I have ventured a little toward the other two.

Since these essays were likely being written in 2004 or earlier, the Emerging Church phenom had not yet ... well ... emerged on the radar of many. I have been thinking about how I would characterize it. It strikes my that there is a stong dose of quiescent politics involved but it is hardly universal.

Denis Hancock
"Since these essays were likely being written in 2004 or earlier, the Emerging Church phenom had not yet ... well ... emerged on the radar of many. I have been thinking about how I would characterize it. It strikes my that there is a stong dose of quiescent politics involved but it is hardly universal."

Many if the emergent websites I have seen reveal a lot of political opinion. I wonder if they compartmentalize their politics -- i.e. they keep politics out of church, but not out of their lives?

Michael Kruse

I notice the same tendency to talk or promote causes and I guess this fits with the movement approach. I don't see a sustained regularized approach which I suspect is deeply connected with institutional phobia. Then again, it could be an age thing, as the movement is overwhelming made up of young adults. It may change with age. Most Emergent leaders I see take great measures not to be associated with specific political groups or parties. Maybe what we are looking at here is individual empowerment and involement but official distance. I wonder if this should be a fourth approach.

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