I value history and tradition. It’s unfortuate, but true, that guys like myself that value ingenuity, creativity and change in church life are often marked as enemies of tradition and history. It’s simply not always true. I do value history! I don’t however, honor history. Let me explain what I think the difference is.
As someone who values history, I am a person who appreciates it and desires to learn from it. I am different from someone who would honor history. I define someone who honors history as someone who desires to replicate history. The major difference between the two types of people is that one desires to learn from history, the other desires to repeat it.
For instance, I value the reformation. As a matter of fact I LOVE the reformation. It’s one of my favorite topics to study. As a result of studying it I am driven to become like Luther, Huss, Knox and others in their steadfastness, their commitment to biblical integrity and their great passion for God. I have no desire, however, to dress up in tights, wear a beret and speak the King’s English. It seems that too many people today want to associate the trappings of history (i.e. the music, the vocabulary, the dress, etc.) with the truths of history. It also seems to me that the modern Emerging Church movement is more concerned with the truths of history rather than the trappings of history.
If all of this is true, then why are we considered the bad guys?