Centre for Public Christianity

What do you make of this? (HT: Jodie Morris)

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6 comments

  1. It looks to me like an Aussie version of some of the work Colson’s been doing (Centurions, Breakpoint, etc.) I think there’s room for another organization devoted to educating the culture on the basic truths of historic Christianity (C.S. Lewis’s “large hall of a great house” metaphor from Mere Christianity comes to mind). Since they’re from Australia, they probably won’t be as influenced by American pop evangelicalism. Which is a good thing.

  2. They say that they want to separate the reality from the caricature of Christianity. That’s definately a worthy cause. I skimmed through John Dickson’s “Review of Bishop Spong’s Jesus for the Non Religious.” Not bad at all. More than that I shouldn’t say until I have a chance to look at more of their material.

  3. “It looks to me like an Aussie version of some of the work Colson’s been doing (Centurions, Breakpoint, etc.)…Since they’re from Australia, they probably won’t be as influenced by American pop evangelicalism.

    I wonder how this could be a version of Colsonism if they also haven’t been influenced by American pop evang’ism?

    Anyway, if we actually think being from down under will keep the influences of American evang’ism at bay we might also be inclined to think rose pedals will follow shock and awe. In other words, this is simply more, ahem, American pop evang’ism.

  4. Their stated goal seems worthy enough. It’s all about the execution though.

    For example, I’m utterly convinced that if more Evangelical Christians were more exposed to what is taught in Confessional/Reformed churches, I think a lot would embrace it. “Calvinism” is a byword in many circles, when it obviously shouldn’t be.

    However, to most people, Christianity = Rome. Therefore, depending on what they actually say, it seems true that to promote generic Christianity is really to promote Rome. Now, if they were promoting the historic Protestant Christian faith and carefully distinguishing that from Rome, then I’d be all for it. As it is, I think Rome will probably be the biggest beneficiary of this.

    If I am right, and Rome will be the biggest beneficiary of this, then I couldn’t be more against it.

    More and more, I’m thinking that the best way to reach “the lost” is through the regular proclamation of the gospel from the man of God in the pulpit of Christ’s Church. Yes, it seems counter-intuitive. Yes, it seems like if more people could hear our message, more people would embrace it. Yes, it seems like we ought to take advantage of modern media-technology. But Jesus said that a city on a hill cannot be hidden. It seems to me that when we seek some method to bring people into the church other than the prescribed method of Scripture, then we really aren’t trusting in the promises of God made to his people.

    But then again, Paul did go to Athens and speak in the marketplace. If the media at large is today’s marketplace of ideas, then perhaps we should be a little quicker to get involved in it.

    In summary: I don’t know.

  5. Echo, I agree with you that “to most people, Christianity = Rome”. That is not a connection people would necessarily make by studying church history. (Just look at the media coverage of the pope’s visit to the US. I’d say that things like that are far more likely to feed into the “Christianity = Rome” kind of mentality.

    I’m far more inclined to believe that an effort like this one is going to clarify, rather than muddle that kind of thinking. Especially if they look at some of the current historical thought that is out there. (Rome used to make the connection that Peter was the first pope, Linus the second, Anacletus the third, Clement the fourth, etc. Now, the evidence is overwhelming that there was not even a monarchical Bishop in Rome for about 200 years, much less a supreme pontiff. Catholic historians now concede that it wasn’t until the 5th century that anything like “primacy” developed. And that word “development” — that is becoming a buzz word.

    My instinct is to go with your instinct, “if more Evangelical Christians were more exposed to what is taught in Confessional/Reformed churches, I think a lot would embrace it.” That applies to non-Christians or nominal Christians, too. If these folks talk about the Reformation at all (as part of church history), my thought is that thinking people will see it for what it is, and that will be a good thing.

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