by John Henderson
The Emergent Nazarenes are in a battle to the death with the grassroots Fundamental Nazarenes, and only one of them will be left standing at the end of it. Either the grassroots Fundamental Nazarenes will prevail over the Emergent Nazarenes or vice versa. Frankly, the Emergent Nazarenes are largely in power for several reasons and that tends to make me a little nervous about them. Their power base is more from general indifference, misinformation, deception, non-committal, and ignorance than from elected positions. If that reverses, they lose overnight. If it persists, the Fundamental Nazarenes lose.
If the typical Emergent Nazarene and their compliant counterparts continue to grow and increase in influence, the Church of the Nazarene as it began and once was is finished. It will go the way of the liberal (formerly evangelical) churches of yesterday and become so blended with them that any differences will be imperceptible.
The Church of the Nazarene has one last chance to redeem itself and if it goes with the progressive, postmodern/new age emergent movement—with continued compromises of plain Biblical values and the co-opting and distortion of traditional Wesleyan concepts as is already being transmitted by Thomas Jay Oord and others—the Church of the Nazarene will lose its soul before the next General Assembly in 2013, or not long thereafter.
It is a battle of ideologies with eternal significance. Other denominations have already lost out to progressive postmodern cultism and the Church of the Nazarene, along with other evangelical/fundamental denominations, are teetering together on the brink of the same disaster. This is a real battle for the soul of the denominations and also for the undying souls of men, women, and children. That makes it more than mere ideology or a set of valued principles. It is far above that and is being carried out in the spiritual realm:
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
Our weapons are not of this world, nor should they be:
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled” (2 Corinthians 10:3-6).