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9 Responses to “Graphic Novel (pt. 3)”

  1. Gerard says:

    Thanks for the timely encouragement to love our wives as Christ loves the church, and gave his body for her.

  2. John Chaffin says:

    Having been a pastor since 1985, I have observed that individualism has been a contributing factor in causing many churches to get in an unblessable position and stay there. I have served three churches. Each have had problems with splits. In each case the leadership of the church had difficulty in understanding how indivdual sin of a leader affects the corporate blessable position of the congregation. The result is a congregation that is full of human potential but lacking the power of God.

  3. John Graff says:

    This essay is spot on, but I have to question something that I run into in much of this kind of writing and speaking. It involves the use of evangelicals and evangelicalsm. Using the terms as you do suggests to me that there is a Christian church universal that consists of two groups of believers: evangelicals and some other unnamed group. One could conclude from your essay that it is only evangelicals who are infected with individualism and enlightenment thinking and therefore are prone to lax (hypocritical)morality.

    Is not every Christian church by definition evangelical and every Christian called to be an evangelist?

  4. Mike Metzger says:

    John:

    You are confusing evangelical with being an evangelist. The modern use of “evangelical” came into existence in the early 1800s and refers to Western church renewal movements that placed an emphasis on individual conversion over institutions, as well as highlighted the Great Commission while overlooking its historic link to the Cultural Mandate. These movements are mainly Protestant and represent a minority but are energetic in the worldwide Christian communion. Charles Finney was one of the most formative leaders in this movement. I recommend James Davison Hunter’s book (“To Change the World”) that describes modern evangelicalism and its challenges.

    There are not two groups of believers. There are Christian faith traditions that would describe themselves as creedal, covenantal, sacramental, etc – but not evangelical. They would however agree that evangelism is a responsibility of every believer. They wouldn’t however associate with much of modern evangelicalism, which Tim Keller describes as highly individualistic and consumerist. Therefore, not every church is by definition evangelical yet every Christian is called to be an evangelist.

  5. Josh Hayden says:

    Hi Mike,

    Is there room in your perspective for an embodied gay marriage theologically/philosophically? Or is your metaphor of embodied also linked to (pro)creation in line with a more holistic Roman Catholic position?

    I’ve really enjoyed your blog thanks to Brody Bond’s introduction!

  6. Mike Metzger says:

    Josh

    I’m not ducking your question when I say, “All good things in good time.” We’ll get to the issue. I get this question a lot. A good friend recently asked me a similar one. My reply to him: “I can’t give you an answer that would sound plausible to you.” His frame for reality is so far from the historic church position that my answer would sound like nonsense. I’m still framing this issue, Josh.

  7. Josh Hayden says:

    Sounds great. The seminary I studied at taught Historical Theology instead of Systematic Theology for that very reason: context/framework dramatically affects how something is understood. It is a lot easier to be generous when you understand the context from which an argument is made. I’m looking forward to your unpacking and (re)framing of the the discussion. Thanks Mike!

  8. Mike Metzger says:

    I am touched by your gracious spirit and patience. Thank you.

  9. Keith Moore says:

    Mike,

    Love the series. I think we can also say that not only do compelling marriages make the most compelling case for marriage but that they also make the most compelling case for the gospel.

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