I am currently reading Organic Church by Neil Cole. I have read several books out of the emerging church movement. Cole’s work is quite insightful and adds some well thought out principles to the Emerging Church conversation. I also see several things that concern me about the movement and some of its pundits. But there is no doubt that what is being said and what is happening is significant–and will stir the mind as to what God is up to.
As I have reflected on some of these works it strikes me that we are in a crucial season for the Chruch as a whole. The very identity of the Church is up for grabs. I currently believe that there are several critical questions that are being asked both inside and outside the Church. Leaders will have to provide answers and directional clarity. Here are what I consider to be some of those key questions that will impact the Church for the foreseeable future:
1. How will the Church ultimately repsond to the homosexual community?
2. What will ultimately be the role of women in leadership within the Church?
3. What is Church?
4. How do we do Church?
5. What is true church growth?
All five of these must be answered with humility and with charity–but all five must be answered biblically. To do less will lead to heresy and dysfunction. These are some of the very questions that the Emerging Church Movement is raising and seeking to answer. Where I believe the movement is shining is in the realm of ministry philosophy. Where I see some stumbling is in the realm of theological clarity.