Emergent Evangelism

Doug Baker, who recently wrote this article that I was quoted in, has written a new article in Baptist Press titled, "Emergent Evangelism: Evangelism by Consensus?"  Here's a piece...

The "emerging" conversation is more than ageneration gap in which the theology of former days (or lack of it) is being challenged by a wave of young ministers with cell phones, PDAs and e-mail via Blackberry. The tension is most evident in the perennial debate among evangelicals about how to "do" church. What should the church look like? How should the church of the 21st century worship and minister in a context of ever-increasing information, but diminishing wisdom? To what extent should tradition be jettisoned in favor of a "whatever works" strategy, and will such strategies reduce Christian evangelism to a mere technique?


Never has the need been more critical for the Gospel to be powerfully preached by the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. How that is done is largely settled in Holy Scripture. The public reading of the Bible, the corporate prayer of the church, the singing of psalms, hymns and spiritual songs to one another, the ordinances of Christian baptism and the Lord’s Supper, the offering of confession and thanksgiving to God are all elements of public worship which are explicitly revealed in Scripture. Is it not strange that almost every modern theory of “emerging” churches disregard many of these direct commands in favor of more “evangelistic” and “relevant” methods? No amount of technology or innovation can ever eclipse or manipulate the clear biblical teaching that evangelism is not simply a matter of form, but of substance.

The Gospel is powerfully effective to save to the uttermost those who have faith in Jesus Christ. For the Gospel is not something men made up by consensus. The plan of salvation is not the accumulation and production of man’s thoughts, but the direct revelation of God. As such, it is to be preached, not amended according to demographics, and boldly declared, not adjusted for the sensitivities of modern audiences.

Please read the article and let me know if I'm missing something.  Is Doug saying emergent evangelism is form without substance?  Is it technology and not truth?  Is it whatever works and mere technique?  Am I totally missing something?  If I'm not, then I think this is a very skewed understanding of the emerging church.  Hey Doug, I know you stop by now and again.  Feel free to jump in bro, and let me know if I get your right or not.