I have said often that I have no intentions of “debating” emergents—neither for the purpose of convincing them nor of getting the best of them. I still have to debate them after a fashion because they still impact on the unsuspecting and ill-informed and thus mislead dear folks who are desperately in need of truth. I see them as more than some recent movement suggesting the church needs to take a modernized approach to winning people to the church. Even in that, they start off on the wrong proposition. Our job is never to win people to the church. It is to win people to Christ. When they are won to Christ, they are automatically part of the Church.
It has also become apparent that they are not merely focused on changing the structure and mission of the church. They are clearly part of the larger package of the socio-political movement known as the progressive liberal movement that involves Marxist principles, secular & religious humanism, modified-atheism, liberation theology, and Saul Alinsky methodology. They are part of a clearly-defined evil trinity of social non-principles, political dictatorship, and religious counterfeiting. They present the evidence of their nature regularly and consistently.
Their arguments have no absolutes and no authority. They rely completely on philosophical approaches of opinion and interpretation. They have no clue of truth in the arena of rational ideas. When faced with truth that they are unable to deny or avoid, they always implode and fall back on vacuous assertions without substance. They cannot deal in substance. They can only make explanations in their own context of irrationality and bias and cannot comprehend the conspicuousness of hard facts and revelation.
They know they are lying and eventually come to a place of believing their own lies. They are incapable of being honest about their own ideas because they do not take truth seriously and build only on emotion and experience. They are closed off from reality because they live in an alternate universe of their own making.
The job of the Christian is rather simple. Just be biblical. That is what wins. Rob Bell may try to convince people that “love wins” as he defines some unbiblical idea of “love” but Christian love is founded in biblical truth, not universalism’s deceptions. Being biblical will so infuriate them (and they do become intensely infuriated when faced with truth) they resort to the methods of a playground fight among fifth-grade boys: They impugn Christians’ character; they attack Christians with clichés; and all of their answers completely lack substance. Once the Christian is able to speak for himself or herself, the “ads” against them where they had not been able to respond become obvious as the deceptions they are.
The rule of thumb is simple: Stick with truth. Don’t waver from truth. You do not even have to explain truth all that much. Truth explains itself and emergents cannot deal with it.