I’ve been using the NIV 2011 and I really like it and I endorse it enthusiastically. It’s now my preaching Bible. I cannot think of a finer group of Christian scholars than those on the Committee for Bible Translation, led by Doug Moo at Wheaton. I know these translators, and they take the Word of God very seriously, and they translated passages with words that they think best translate what the Bible says.
For those unfamiliar with resolutions in the SBC, they are non-binding expressions of the “messengers” attending a given Annual Meeting of the SBC. In other words, the action in Phoenix this past June represented an incredibly small percentage of Southern Baptists.
I broke up my discussion into several posts, because this book has joined the likes of Mark Noll’s The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind in terms of reshaping my thinking. Also, I’ve been interested, for the past 7-8 years, in the same ideas that Fitch criticizes, so I found myself amen-ing and underlining on nearly every page. Since I started the book, it’s hard not to notice in headlines the very things Fitch deconstructs, so I want to throw in some examples outside the book. Therefore, I simply could not do it justice in one post. My review(s) will also be posted here, and be sure to check out other reviews there as well.
As someone who has known American evangelicalism as her cultural “home” for some time, it seems to me, there are (generally speaking) two types of women in evangelical churches today. There are those who find the Proverbs 31 woman an inspiring example of industrious, virtuous womanhood that they admire and seek to emulate daily. And, there are those who find the Proverbs 31 woman an overwhelmingly idealistic and romantic picture of domestic life so far removed from their reality that they cringe every time they hear her invoked. Ok, maybe this dichotomy is a little exaggerated! But, I think it speaks to the “mixed bag” that is the Proverbs 31 woman and the way she is used in evangelical churches today. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the woman of Proverbs 31, let me try to briefly explain the issue at hand, as I understand it.
Emerging, Progressive, Liberal Evangelical
Many argue for the value of labels. I tend to think they short circuit conversations. They also make of persons categories. I often refer to a line from the movie, My Dog Skip. The anti-hero was facing his demons realizing that people had labeled him. He was given advice from the young boy who idolized him. He suggested people like to label others so they can pitch them in their pocket and never have to deal with them as people. The labels emerging, progressive, liberal tend to be both owned by those who self-select these identities as well as used by those who find it necessary to critique.
Roger Olson offered a guest post by Brandon from the Void Collective. If my memory serves me, those from the Void offered a presentation at Subverting the Norm in Springfield last October. Brandon raises questions about the Emergent Church specifically as he reflects on the recent Wild Goose Festival.
Tony Jones argues the label progressive is not a theological term and so those who would not self-identify as liberals need a new word as “Evangelical” seems to have become the purview of conservative/fundamentalists.
David Fitch and Matt Tebbe offer a response to an upcoming book, What Pastors Wish Their Congregations Knew by Kurt Fredrickson and Cameron Lee. In Fitch-ian fashion the letter undercuts much of the way pastoral leadership is taught and practiced in Evangelical churches. There is little doubt one will miss the Anabaptist influence. Fitch and Tebbe contend pastoral submission in working through church conflict may be a means of sanctification.