It has taken me some time, due to my own slacken-ness to finish this book. It has an interesting full title:
A Generous Orthodoxy : Why I am a missional, evangelical, post/protestant,
liberal/conservative, mystical/poetic, biblical, charismatic/contemplative,
fundamentalist/Calvinist, Anabaptist/Anglican, Methodist, catholic, green,
incarnational, depressed- yet hopeful, emergent, unfinished Christian.
This book took me a very long time because the first half was less motivating to me than the second half. Or, maybe, I was more ready for the second half? Either way…
McLaren, a fantastic thinker and teacher, begins with 100 pages on Jesus, including a warning chapter (chapter 0), that kind of sets the stage. Then he takes each adjectif and builds a chapter around it. It seems very much an apologetic for McLarn himself, after having recieved harsh criticisms regarding his theological questioning. After reading this text however, I don’t see how people are pegging him as a universalist, but peggers do like to peg.
Anyways, here’s some motivating quotes and questions:
p.23, “…clarity is sometimes overrated…”
How badly do we need to know before we believe?
p.111, quoting a mentor of McLaren’s, “Remember, in a pluralistic world, a religion is valued based on the benefits it brings to its nonadherents.”
p.160, “…we wanted clear assurance that God didn’t like the people we didn’t like, and for the same reasons we didn’t like them.”
This was convicting to me. How do I really love the people I don’t like. More than being a horrible cliche?
p.195/6, redoing TULIP, “T = Triune Love … U = Unselfish Election … L = Limitless Reconciliation … I = Inspiring Grace … P = Passionate, Persistent Saints”
p.240 “I must admit that, apart from a miracle, I see no human power capable of standing up to the expanding empire of global consumerism, which author Tom Beaudoin ominously calls “theocapitalism.”
p.256, eight thoughts on postmodern evangelism – this will be a separate post with thoughts
p.267, “In the previous chapter, I suggested that Jesus didn’t come to start another religion, which would include the Christian religion.”
First thoughts: Uh-oh…but after reflection I have to ask, then why did Jesus come? To seek and save the lost, right? To begin a disciple-making movement right? To bring fulfillment to the law right?