Emergent Church

Your First Step Won't Be Your Last

Avoiding the Path to Compromise

“Few people walk away from the faith suddenly. Usually it is an incremental series of compromises that eventually tear down the absolute authority of Scripture.” —Pastor Mike Harding from the thread “Are You REALLY a Fundamentalist?”
footprints.jpgA Christian does not go to bed one night in fidelity to the Scriptures and wake up in the morning a full-blown compromiser. If compromise is going to happen, it will happen over time. The first step of compromise is the hardest. Who hasn’t faced the choice to remain true to biblical principles or to take the easy road of compromise? The Spirit of God pricks our consciences when we face those choices. You know the voice; Scripture comes to mind, and if we listen, it protects us from making wrong choices. If we have taken that first step of compromise, subsequent steps become easier to take. The term “slippery slope” is a very good way to describe the road to compromise and modernism. Set one foot on the slope of compromise, and you’ll find the rest of the downhill slide quick and easy.

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Why Stay in Fundamentalism?

tracks.jpgA few hours ago, I carefully listened to an MP3 in which Joe Zichterman, former Bible professor at Northland Baptist Bible College (Dunbar, WI), discusses his reasons for joining the Church-Growth Movement (CGM) in general and Willow Creek Community Church (South Barrington, IL) in particular. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has found his presentation both moving and disturbing.

My heart goes out to Joe and to his family because it’s evident to me that he or someone in his family (or both) has suffered something very painful at the hands of fundamentalists. (In the talk, Joe doesn’t target Fundamentalism by name but clearly includes it under the “high-control groups” label.) Whether what was painful was also wrong I’m not in a position to know, but it’s certainly possible.

I’ll respond to a few points in Joe’s presentation, but the larger goal here is to encourage anyone pondering a similar move to rethink his options.

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