January 17, 2021

Andrew Jones: An Emerging “Apostle” and His American Epistle

andrewsmall.jpgAndrew Jones- a.k.a. the Tall Skinny Kiwi– is a missionary spokesmen to and for the global emerging church. Andrew wouldn’t like me saying this, but I see him as an apostle for the movement and the absolutely must-hear voice to understand the emerging church.

He is the type of emerging church leader our Truly Reformed ™ watchblogs won’t listen to and chose to ignore when they base their continuing portrait of the EC on straw men and ignorance. Listening to Andrew is an education, and I recommend him to everyone who reads IM, particularly those of you in the reformed camp who suspect that the continuing “analysis” of the EC you are hearing is woefully one-sided.

Andrew has really shared his heart with this current post: What I Would Say To The Young American Emerging Churches. It’s a passionate appeal for real Christianity as an apologetic that can’t be criticised easily. It’s an even handed epistle, and everyone should read it.

If you want to remain ignorant, please avoid this post.

Read: What I Would Say To The Young American Emerging Church.

UPDATE: Here is a perfect example of what the emerging church is getting from the reformed watchblogs. Why is there a determination to hear everything in the worst possible spin? I can’t help but believe commenters like this are simply not going to give any emerging leader room to express themselves in less than reformed Baptist-speak, no matter what their point happens to be. There is one way to say everything- the way the watchblogs say/hear it in their Calvinistic circles- and the emerging leaders might as well be speaking an unknown tongue when they talk about spiritual direction, etc. The ideas that Bell is expressing are common among the proponents of those reaching out to post-denominational young westerners. Is he getting it right? All the more reason to read Jones on a regular basis.

Travis Prinzi visited an emerging church, critiqued it, and continued to dialogue with the leaders as brothers in Christ. Imagine that. No….you probably can’t.


  1. This article is a God-send. I’m a young Emergent in a very conservative (read: anti-Emergent) area. All I hear about Emergent is the negative he talks about, but everytime I’m able to go to hear Rob Bell at Mars Hill (which isn’t nearly as often as I’d like) I have to wonder if these critics are referring to the same church I just attended.

  2. Michael,

    Thanks for the link. Tall Skinny seems a bit over the top and paranoid but he does seem to raise good points over many a misconception.


  3. Michael,

    I share some of your frustration in dealing with my fellow reformed brothers when discussing matters of the EC. Its not that I am an EC guy, but I feel, through dialouge and a bit of reading of their blogs (Andrew’s included)etc that I know a little bit about what many of them are trying to say. The frustrating thing to me is, that the critique of EC by us TR’s (I suppose I am one)rarely gets past surface assumptions and completely erroneous understandings of what the EC is saying.

    Now, the EC can be blamed for a lot of that, being a bit hard to pin down, but I think we owe it to our brothers in Christ to at least hear what they are saying and respond to it. Having personal conversations with both Doug Pagitt and Brian McLaren I’ve found them both to be liakable, good humored brothers who I happen to agree with on a few things and disagree with on quite a few more.

  4. messychristian says

    Pardon my ignorance, but are you saying that only Reformed Christians have a problem with the Emergent movement? If it’s so, why?

    I’m just puzzled that’s all …. i come from a country where such divisions don’t exist (or if they do it’s among the academics), and I find it very puzzling and disheartening at the same time to read about this. I sometimes worry that this quarrel will be exported to my country like many other Christian fads/culture …

  5. I think most of the criticism of the emerging movement that is in print comes from reformed Christians, yes.

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