Alan Hirsch is also blogging now, and has posted part of the introduction to his new book, which opens with
The fact that you have started reading this book will mean that not only are you interested in the search for a more authentic expression of ecclesia (the NT word for church), but you are in some sense aware of the dramatic changes in worldview that has been taking place in general culture over the last fifty years or so.
I really need to nab myself a copy of the book at some point. His blog makes good reading too, the last entry I was still digesting was on The Rise and Rise of Apostolic Movements, where he says,
My new book begins with an ancient Chinese saying that goes like thisâ€¦
After a time of decay comes the turning point. The powerful light that has been banished returns. There is movement, but it is not brought about by force. â€¦ The movement is natural, arising spontaneously. The old is discarded and the new is introduced. Both measures accord with the time; therefore no harm results.
I start with this because I believe it profoundly captures the spirit of our own times. It seems to me that this is exactly what is happening in our own day. And I am not only referring to the emerging church phenomenon in the narrow sense of the term, but rather to the emergence of new â€˜apostolic movements.â€™ A much larger, and more thoroughgoing phenomenon.
If the problem has become that we donâ€™t really know how this form of ecclesia (the primary NT wiord for the church) manifests and organizes because we have become so captivated by a predominantly institutional idea of the church, then our hope lies in remembering it rather than inventing it. The underlying thesis of my book is that it lies latent/dormant in all of Godâ€™s authentic people. It is not something that we have to trump up, we simply have to â€˜rememberâ€™ – hence the book is called The Forgotten Ways.
At present, Exiles is one of the books I have started and want to spend more time with — it’s as insightful as I had come to expect after reading TSOTTC, and I expect that Forgotten Ways will prove the same. I have two other books on the go right now besides Exiles, and hope to share further thoughts on all of them soon.