The Gospel Vs. Traditions of Men: Who Said That?

images

Many conservative evangelicals and emerging “post-evangelicals” display their common heritage in an American revivalist tradition that Dietrich Bonhoeffer described as “Protestantism without the Reformation.” In a recent issue of TIME on Pope Benedict’s critical relationship with Islam, conservative Catholic scholar Michael Novak was quoted as saying concerning the pontiff, “His role is to represent Western civilization.” There are a lot of evangelical leaders who seem to think that this is their job, too. The mission of the church is to drive out the Romans (i.e., Democrats) and make the world safe for democracy. The Emergent movement’s politics are different: they lean left rather than right. For many reared on the “Christian America” hype of the religious right, this may seem like a major shift, but it’s just a change in parties rather than a deeper shift from moralism to evangelical mission. The Emergent sociology is different, too: Starbucks and acoustic guitars in dark rooms with candles rather than Wal-Mart and praise bands in bright-lighted theaters. Yet in either case, moralism continues to push “Christ crucified” to the margins.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Civil religion, Guess the Good Guy, Quotes. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to The Gospel Vs. Traditions of Men: Who Said That?

  1. Chris Donato says:

    David Wells?

    -or-

    DeYoung and Kluck?

  2. Renee says:

    “conservative Catholic scholar Michael Novak was quoted as saying concerning the pontiff, “His role is to represent Western civilization.” There are a lot of evangelical leaders who seem to think that this is their job, too. ”

    Important to note that Michael Novak said this,not the Pope. It is also important to read the entire Time magazine transcript containing this quote in its entire context.

    This is much different than someone who self appoints themselves as representatives of God or Civilizations as you imply evangelical leaders do.

  3. Zrim says:

    Chris,

    No, no and no.

    Renee,

    Points well taken about who said what, as well as contexts. But given that Vatican City has its own post office, it’s hard to believe Novak doesn’t have a pretty firm grasp on the Roman Church’s project. And I know you think I’m a broken record on this point, but given projects like ECT and certain other love fests, I don’t see how it’s any different from what evangelical leaders are all about.

  4. Renee says:

    I guess I will concede the point. Maybe Michael Novak read Thomas Woods book below.

    “Western civilization stands indebted to the Church for the university system, charitable work, international law, the sciences, and, important legal principles. … Western civilization owes far more to the Catholic Church than most people — Catholic included — often realize. … The Church, in fact, built Western civilization.”

    How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization

    Thomas E. Woods Jr.

  5. Zrim says:

    Mike,

    You win. Nice work.

    Renee,

    Or maybe Novak shares Carter’s assumptions?

  6. RubeRad says:

    Late to the party (as usual), but Horton used that emergent/starbucks line in Christless Christianity–the book, as well. Amazon “Search inside this book” sez it’s p. 116. Can’t blame a guy from plagiarizing himself, especially with lines that good!

    (But it’s that kind of recycling that made reading Christless Christianity mostly a “been there, done that, heard the WHI” kind of experience for me)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s