Saturday, May 22, 2010

Spencer on Spencer

Nate Spencer seems to be channeling Michael Spencer. It's all good, and it's important, because it's another voice asking the hard questions of evangelical "papers in order" Christianity. Which means, among other things, asking them of ourselves. Here are a couple of meaty snips:
Church-shaped spirituality, at least for those not familiar with Michael's work, is not easily identified because most of it is coming from places where the proper boxes are checked, and there's enough fruit of some sort for people to be able to believe that God's blessing is there. There's enough commitment to the basics to keep it from being easily repudiated. Yet it's distracted, self-medicating, pseudo-spirituality, and no one should be ashamed to say so.
This is not about writing off entire churches, people as individuals, or movements. It's about repudiating lies. Exposing terrible priorities and not worrying about it too much if the stupid thing crumbles as a result. As shiny as it was, that doesn't mean God wanted it there. It's about calling functional heresy what it is, even when there's a visible affirmation of orthodoxy. (I don't think Michael ever used the term "functional heresy" to describe churchianity, but I just did.) It's about refusing to let superficial results dictate what's valuable to us.
And what Nate says about Michael Spencer is funny and true (and I think Michael would have had a chuckle over it: "Calling the baby ugly is one thing Michael did well."

[Disclaimer: Nate is kin, but Michael, as far as I know, was not.]

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