Thinking Aloud 15 – Reformation, Hillsong and Beer

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Here’s the latest as we discuss Reformation 500 and the Bible Society’s recent interactions with Hillsong and a brewery…

See also my review of Ideas the Changed the World.

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  1. #withheld#

    After listening the podcast and hearing the many valid concerns, I just don’t believe it portrayed a full enough perspective of the situation.

    I would like to believe that the intent of Anglican ministers engaging in speaking at Hillsong ( has now occurred a number of times) is not so much an ‘endorsement’ of Hillsong explicitly but seeing an opportunity to ‘model’ a biblical teaching approach to such an audience that is not typically exposed to, and by doing so gives opportunity to bring better appetite for a more orthodox trajectory in their church practices.

    Sure, from many social media comments/post etc, many Hillsong leaders have interpreted the occasion as a recognition/endorsement of their movement. But it’s a long bow to believe that is the same message Anglican ministers speaking there are also conveying, especially as I’m yet to see any key Hillsong affiliated person invited to speak and any Sydney Anglican church, or endorsed event by them, either as whole hearted endorsed or theological debate / q&a.

    The thing is, when ppl get amongst the hillsong culture, to fit in (be accepted in the group) you essentially have to adopt a filter that dismisses the gospel inconsistencies (to put it lightly), a focuses on the pragmatic outcomes (bums on seats, grow grow grow) being demonstrated. Saying this, to see increasing orthodoxy amongst Hillsong, in its current culture, it will not happen from within ( eg the royal commission blankly showed that, that by it’s pressure, Hillsong’s risk management/child protection framework is moving towards community expected standards).

    Saying that, critical commentary from afar has limited positive effect on change to Hillsong culture/orthodoxy, it’s just not their currency of communication. It’s the trench level engagement and modelling that’s going to positively influence things, It will be a ‘an iron sharpens iron’ dynamic that will work, but just remember, for ‘iron sharpening iron to be effective’, one component is usually a blunt sword swinging wildly making lots of noise, and not landing many effective blows, the other is a ‘purpose built’ sword sharpening implement that can serve to sharpen many swords πŸ˜‰

    Cheers, keep up the good dialogue of issues

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