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My Conversation with Emergent Church Leader Dan Kimball

By Ken Silva


Having had the chance to talk with Dan Kimball, he honestly strikes me as a very nice person. However, this cannot be a deciding factor for me because of his personal choice to be so heavily involved in the Emergent Church since its inception by Leadership Network. Oddly enough, for someone who is with a movement steeped in agnosticism Kimball appears certain that this particular approach to the "Christian" faith is the best.


Men and women, a large part of my job here at Apprising Ministries is to help educate Christians at a time of alarmingly low discernment skills in the Body of Christ. Dan has written an article called "My Doctrinal Statement Can Beat Up Your Doctrinal Statement". In it Kimball says: "as I am thinking about doctrine, what I have found so sad is the way we fight about doctrine sometimes…as most people assume they have the correct 'doctrine' to guard." Alright, let me stop us right here.


If you are not careful as you dialogue with those who have bought into the false teachings of this neo-liberal cult of the EmergentChurch you will get caught up in this web. Kimball has stated what is fast becoming a classic argument from many of the younger people who have been listening to these poorly trained Emergent leaders. "People assume they have the correct 'doctrine' to guard."


The best way to answer this argument, and to show them just how silly it actually is, would be to say: "What makes you assume they don't have the correct 'doctrine' to guard?" You see, for these Emergent leaders who have left the Church, the burden of proof for such an argument is actually on them. We know from Jude 3 that there is a faith once for all delivered to the saints, and even further, that they already had it in the first century.


In fact the Greek literally speaks of a "once delivered" faith. Secondly, we also have the Apostle Paul's exhortation to the young minister Timothy – "and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also." [1] The truth is that the authentic doctrine of what Dr. Walter Martin often called "the historic orthodox Christian faith" can be traced.


But this is exactly what these men in the EmergentChurch do. So bent are they on adapting the Christian faith to our "pluralistic" (the first century was quite pluralistic as well) and "postmodern" culture, while carefully avoiding any controversy, that they are willing to concede that absolute Truth cannot be objectively known. Then why even have a Christian faith? Ah, but that's just the point isn't it; men like Brian McLaren and Richard Foster have their theological agenda of uniting all religions through transcendental meditation and younger fools like Dan Kimball are now following their truth-obscuring footsteps.


Dan Kimball says of Slice: "But, I go on certain web sites and blogs when 'doctrine' is discussed (which it should be) but there are such mean, mean Christians who seem so bitter and angry and slam other Christians about issues and doctrines that we just don't know for sure about. We can say we think we know for sure, but we just don't." But the burden of proof is on Kimball, as I now say to Dan: "You can say you think we don't know for sure, but we just do."


The Reformation was fought over doctrinal purity and Truth. Men were burned alive at the stake and yet Emergent leaders are afraid to even have someone criticize them. Are we to throw all that out Dan because you and your friends Doug Pagitt and Tony Jones don't happen to like that version of the Christian faith? C'mon, today I admonish you Dan, grow a spiritual backbone and walk away from these deceivers.


And finally, Kimball says: "Could it be that some people are insecure, so they need to secure all their beliefs so tightly and defend everything that does rest as uncertain? Does knowing doctrine make us more like Jesus and loving? Dan let me ask you this: "Could it be that you are so insecure that you can't secure all your beliefs so tightly so you must believe everything your friends think is uncertain actually is? And does not knowing doctrine make us more like Jesus and loving?"


For this postmodern philosophy (see–Colossians 2:8) of the Emergent Church that is attempting to pass it itself off as authentic Christianity, the burden of proof is on them to show us truth is relative and that it cannot be held with certainty. Our Lord hung on a Cross for His certitude, His immediate Apostles were all martyred, and many of their own disciples were as well. Yet EmergentChurch leaders are essentially telling us: "But thank God we've now discovered the actual Christian faith (in true cult fashion) that is acceptable to the world."


For those EmergentChurch leaders, and those who follow these blind fools, who believe that, I am certain of one thing: They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. [2] Men and women, the issue today is still the same: "Choose this day whom you will follow." And Dan, you had best go and find out means to be certain of your doctrine because the corrupt EmergentChurch movement has totally missed this aspect of Christ's mission: "Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division." [3]


And for the true Christian, there can be no compromise…



[1] 2 Timothy 2:2.

[2] 1 John 4:5.

[3] Luke 12:51.