Emergent Soteriology: The Dark Side

Trevor C. Craigen | August 25, 2009

Brian MacLaren typifies the dissatisfaction of the emergent over the format and praxis of modern churches. Such reactions ignore Psalm 1 in setting forth the source and impact of a proper worldview, a definitive conclusion about a proper worldview, and a formal approved conclusion as to a proper worldview. Though Emergent churches might identify themselves as evangelical, they still register dissatisfaction with the existing evangelical church, a dissatisfaction that spills over and affects emergent’s doctrine of salvation. The language of Emergent churches ignores a number of traditional soteriological terms and redefines others. Emergent soteriology replaces biblical emphasis on a person’s eternal destiny with emphasis on one’s future condition and status in the present life, ignoring the impact of present behavior on future destiny. Because of selling short the words of Scripture, Emergent perspectives also are woefully errant in understanding the work of Christ on the cross. Emergents have revised the meaning of the well-known acrostic TULIP, depriving it of meanings given it in the Bible. They have an inclusivist view of the eternal destiny of the unsaved, leaning toward the position of universalism. Rather than following the worldview of Psalm 1, the movement has fallen into a pattern resulting from present-world philosophy.

Vol. 17, no. 2 (Fall 2006)

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Craigen, Trevor C.. "Emergent Soteriology: The Dark Side." The Master's Seminary Journal 17, no. 2 (Fall 2006): 177-190.