04 October 2010

"Pint Night" and Redeemer Presbyterian NYC

Question: If you are a fairly famous pastor of a fairly large church and one of your affiliates decides to do something unbiblical, are you obligated to speak out against that church? I certainly hope so! The blog Lighting the Way Worldwide has an interesting article about All Souls church, affiliated with Tim Keller's Redeemer Presbyterian in NYC. It seems All Souls has decided to start up their own approach to "pub theology." Now we need only wait to see if Tim Keller steps forward to condemn this decision. I'll go out on a limb here, though, and predict that we won't hear a thing from Pastor Keller. He's probably too busy practicing for the next Way of the Monk class being offered at his own church.

"Pint Night" and Redeemer Presbyterian NYC

How about meeting for "Pint Night" and calling it a church gathering at the local "watering hole" (as the church calls it, referenced in their web site below)? Any alcoholic sinner of the world would want to attend in his or her dis-ease, and not just that, but stay for more rounds of drink to bury and numb any emotional discomfort in alcoholism! It is a place where the town drunks act the same as the church members! Wow, what a "missional" concept---exploiting the weaknesses of others in God's name and demeaning God's power to heal spiritual and emotional wounds without alcohol.

The Bible says we are to be "sober" and of a "sound mind," so the idea of drinking at a Bible study is a tad contradictory, but it seems to be the postmodern way of this new PCA Presbyterian Church, All Souls, affiliated with Redeemer Presbyterian NYC where Tim Keller is pastor. Jesus said, "Come to Me...," not alcohol, but I have a feeling this "church" will not be emphasizing what Jesus said over pop-culture trends. After all, this church is being created by the elders for the pub. Imagine the Bride of Christ sitting on a bar stool with spirits of whiskey and beer all around. The Bible teaches the Bride of Christ is worth a whole lot more.

Yet, all the souls at this affiliate church of Redeemer Pres. NYC in Seattle are apparently off to the pub to drink a beer or two in God's name. Yes, this is surely a church where all the souls of the world would feel welcome (unless the souls wish to remain sober and abstain from alcohol, that is). Not a bit of "oving the Lord "with all your MIND" going on as they meet at the pub to get a little buzz, so I predict this "church" will draw large numbers and be a "success." Will the "Bible study" teacher be drinking at the "Pint Night," too? Is the idea to get a little loosened up perhaps in order to wash the Gospel down, to have a drink and let the "spirit(s)" roll?

The new church, All Souls, in Seattle, WA, is an affiliate of Redeemer Presbyterian NYC and offers "Pint Night" to all the souls who would evidently not care to remain "sober minded" as the Bible teaches. They plan to meet at the pub here. I wonder if there is a drink limit at the Bible study. It would not be my kind of church, because I don't drink beer. But, then again, I am an old-fashioned Christian who was never taught to drink beer while at "Bible study." Yes, this is certainly a new "missional" way---drinking beer at the pub, getting a little tipsy and calling such an experience "church." In all fairness, perhaps it is not meant to be a Bible study. It is not specified as a Bible study. Maybe they are just meeting to hang out at "the watering hole" and drink. The Bride of Christ deserves better. I would never want to go to a "watering hole" with a man, and I thank God that Jesus takes me to places much better than a pub as His Bride. Down on my knees with Him is a much better place any night of the week.
Read this entire article here.

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