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Joined: 2006/9/11
Posts: 294
North Pole, Alaska

 How to confront a sunday school teacher?


I need some advice on how to confront my sunday school teacher about the content of his lessons in our young adult class; he is a subscriber to the "emerging church" movement and constantly focusus on the postmodern christian school of thought (an oxymoron!). Our church is the North Pole Missionary Chapel, a holiness denomination, and though I do not fully subscribe to their convictions concerning manner of dress, I do believe that their teachings are in concordance with scripture.

The problem I have with the class substance is that some of the sermons are from one Brian McLaren, a post modern preacher who has spoken at a church pastored by an openly gay pastor, and alot of the articles we discuss come from this magazine

I do not agree with this philosophy of the social gospel, and I know that our church doesn't either, however I don't think that they are aware of what is being taught. Furthermore there are alot of people in our class in their late teen/early twenties (including me at 25) and I don't want them to get the wrong influence. How do I confront him? Should I go to the head of the sunday school teachers first or confront him first?
This is really grieving me in the spirit

Love, Joe

 2007/8/4 1:56Profile

Joined: 2006/8/25
Posts: 1658
Indiana USA

 Re: How to confront a sunday school teacher?

Use the Bible. Most of the “emergent/relevant/postmodern” garbage can be shot down with true interpretation of scripture. Make a list of the different articles and topics that have grieved your spirit and start a page(s) of scripture to give him. Tell him you are concerned with the fact that much of what is being discussed in class comes from very questionable sources. With scripture you can prove it faulty. Defend absolute truth, and object when you hear it being denied. This is a situation that many here on SI have, and probably still are facing. You will get good advice.


 2007/8/4 2:23Profile

Joined: 2006/7/5
Posts: 640

 Re: How to confront a sunday school teacher?

A good book to pick up would be D. A. Carson's "Becoming Conversant with the Emergent Church". Have you also talked to your pastor about your concerns?

A second action you could take is download and burn sermons from the download section here that could correct your Sunday School teacher's philosophy. A.W. Tozer, David Wilkerson, and Carter Conlon would by three that I would recommend to you.

SI Moderator - Jeremy Hulsey

 2007/8/4 8:46Profile

Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re: How to confront a sunday school teacher?


The Scriptures say that if any man speaks, he is to do so as the oracle of God. If possible, sit down over lunch with your Sunday school teacher and exhort him to this end. For if he's preaching this stuff on a regular basis, it shows that he's not coming prepared to speak to you every Sunday as the oracle of God.

Jimmy H

 2007/8/4 10:14Profile

 Re: How to confront a sunday school teacher?

Joe said: The problem I have with the class substance is that some of the sermons are from one Brian McLaren, a post modern preacher who has spoken at a church pastored by an openly gay pastor, and alot of the articles we discuss come from this magazine

Perhaps the Sunday School Teacher is not aware of this man has ministered in a church that is pastored by an openly gay man. You need to get all your facts together concerning this Brian McLaren and this openly gay pastor that Brian ministered at, and get written documents that say that he is gay so that you can present this to your Teacher.

This is how I would go about it without appearing to be arrogant. You humble yourself to the LORD in prayer asking for guidance in this situation. Amen
You ask if you can speak to your Teacher alone, and ask him/her of their convictions about the gay lifestyle. If he is for it, then there is no sense in showing him about Mr McLaren. Your next step is to go to the one higher up from him asking the same question about their conviction. If your teacher is against it then show him what Brian McLaren is all about and tell him how you feel about it. If the SS Teacher still continues to use McLaren's works then you move your case to the head of the SS department.

If the whole department rejects your findings, you may have to leave the organization or find out if the LORD wants you to stay there and be a witness.

God Bless

 2007/8/4 12:01

Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164


Here is a good website:

It is a tough thing to confront a teacher/pastor in a church about wrong doctrine/practice. I've had to do it once before, not something I enjoyed. All I can say is pray and God will give you what specific things are worth disputing.

Josh Parsley

 2007/8/4 14:12Profile

Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776

 Re: addressing the emergent movement

Before you confront your teacher, you should do some reseach. You'll find some good sermons on the topic here:
[url=]D A Carson - sermons [/url]

He points out that many of the leaders in the emergent church have come out of rigid evangelical backgrounds. So, as much as you feel that your church is on track, it is good to also prayerfully seek God for an evaluation of your own church enviromnent - what in it may be influencing some to respond by leaning over to the emergent direction. And, by the way, there are some positive aspects of the movenent - as you'll see Carson point out. You need to know what actually to address, not just the entire movement, which can mean just about anything. It is a very broad term. So is "postmodernism".

Have you read and evaluated some of McLaren's work - and noticed what exactly conflicts with scripture? That may be a good place to start. Certainy Carson will help you on that.



 2007/8/4 14:40Profile


I had a teacher once that spoke he believed Judas went to heaven. I confronting the teacher and the statement, in class and gave the scripture to back up why I disagreed and ask him did he have one to confirm his statement. He gave none. Was I wrong?
Comments welcome.

 2007/8/4 15:15

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7464


There is nothing that annoys me more is when someone who I believe to know the Scriptures will promote a concept alien to it, even someone from my own brotherhood. It is like: "Can you not read??!!!"

To confront someone who is speaking error is a very touchy thing. You may have the best motives in mind, use the best strategy or kindness BUT if they have a big ego, you will meet with resistance - no matter whether it is done in private or public. I have done both. Actually, there are gifted teachers but when they are wrong in therir declaration of Biblical truth, they do not like to told that. A humble person will welcome reactions from his/her class. In fact we are commanded to do that. Consider Galatians 6: 6: "Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with him who teaches." (NASB) The student is required to interact with the teacher.

My understanding of this question...


Sandra Miller

 2007/8/4 21:06Profile

Joined: 2006/9/11
Posts: 294
North Pole, Alaska


Thanks for the comments so far, they certainly help to give me a more complete picture as to what to do.
Roadsign, it is true that the emreging movement is wide and varied like any other system, but I am just worried about the foundation that it is built on-postmodernism. Part of this theory is to play word games and denounce metanarratives (meta:grand narrative:story) focusing more on an observation that language and therefore truth is cultural and subjective. When coupled with the gospel, this can pose many problems.
In addition to that I find the endorsement of many secular entertainment venues by the emerging church disturbing, due to the fact that they think they need to identify with a world that is thinks that all Christians are self righteous legalists, if the shoe fits wear it.
It's kind of like the "cool older brother approach"

This is the church that Mr. McLaren spoke to an several occasions, if you scroll down the main page you can see the pastor and his partner. Also if you click under audio downloads and then under guest speakers, you will see Mr. McLaren.

 2007/8/4 22:08Profile

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