This is one of those posts I'll archive and re-read for myself occasionally.
There are surely critical times when love for God and others may demand that we raise our voice or endanger a relationship (and even here, there is an inner calm that can pertain born of our conviction and security). But many times, we are in a position to dispassionately stay above the controversy and be the voice of reason and perspective.
Dr. D. A. Carson has written a critical review of emergent, and of my work in particular. Dr. Al Mohler and others have praised and quoted Carson's book in reviews and articles of their own. Unfortunately, in a number of ways their reviews misrepresent and misjudge my writings, thinking, and beliefs - and those of my friends. A number of scholars are responding to these critiques.I do hope that he will clarify where he has been misrepresented. Although hard, I think this will benefit the entire conversation that is taking place. Note, by the way, that McLaren has given Carson's book three stars at Amazon:
I've given the book 3 stars because, although I believe the book misinterprets my friends and me on some important points, it opens up important space for dialogue - and it offers some criticism which will be constructive and helpful. The book concludes with the hope that those of us in the emergent conversation will be open to correction, and I hope readers will be assured that we welcome critique, and will seek to learn from it all we can.On that note, I am encouraged whenever friendly critique takes place. Rather than being a breech of community, it is the essence of community (real community values truth as much as it does love, and surfaces and deals with issues appropriately). I hope we can continue to foster and welcome disagreement and healthy discussion, even when it's uncomfortable for us. When it hurts, I hope we can re-affirm our respect and love for one another but still refuse to be threatened by a movement that values truth just as much as it does love. That is the essence of true community.