From their official website, the Wild Goose festival “is a community gathered at the intersection of justice, spirituality, music and art. Our main annual event is a 4-day, outdoor festival hosted each summer in North Carolina.” Among many others, the speakers for 2013 include Emergent leaders Brian McLaren, Phyllis Tickle and Philip Yancey. Previous speakers have included Jay Bakker and Shane Claiborne. How did it start?
This group held their first festival in June of 2011. There, Jim Wallis, T-Bone Burnett, Phyllis Tickle, Vincent Harding, Over the Rhine, Christian Peacemaker Teams, Brian McLaren, Peggy & Tony Campolo, InterVarsity Press, Restoring Eden, Michelle Shocked, Rev. William Barber, Jim Forbes, Gabriel Salguero, Paul Fromberg, Lynne Hybels, and 1,700 others met at the intersection of justice, spirituality, music, and art. We sang, learned, taught, argued, prayed, ate, danced, imagined a new world, and gave birth to the Wild Goose community.
In the video above, Rev. William Barber quotes Matthew 23:23 and redefines being “born again” as “being in opposition to injustice.” The next speaker Lynne Hybels, wife of Bill Hybels and co-founder with him of Willow Creek Community Church, who says sometimes she rages against God when she sees the “tragedy of the world.” Jim Wallis of Sojourners speaks of “social change.”
Once again, this event demonstrates the fascistic social gospel of immanence which characterizes the Emerging Church movement: nature, emotion and community. “Give us new things to taste and to feel and to touch and to see,” says Melvin Bray epitomizing the here-and-now emphasis over God’s transcendent truth and morality. They welcome you to ” talk, listen, eat and camp together with us as equals, captivated and challenged by the call of radical humanity, and who seek to celebrate diversity and promote the common good,” NOT for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:12).
Gabriel Salguero has much good to say about loving all people regardless of their differences but he makes a great error saying, “There is no citizenship test to be a part of the Kingdom of God.” Jesus said, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3) and Paul warns Christians, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived.” (1 Corinthians 6:9) But the Wild Goose blog says just the opposite while claiming to be of the Christian tradition: “open to all regardless of belief, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, denomination or religious affiliation.”
The next speaker on the video clip above, David Wilcox, said he prayed that his heart would be filled with a wisdom which he couldn’t find apart from the Wild Goose festival. However, all along, God has made Jesus Christ our all-sufficient wisdom (1 Corinthians 3:3). Jesus Christ as revealed in Scripture is conspicuously absent from this event. They say Wild Goose is a “Celtic spirituality metaphor that evokes unpredictability, beauty, and grace.” The Wild Goose blog says “The Wild Goose is a Celtic metaphor for the Holy Spirit.” But the Holy Spirit will glorify Jesus!
In an article entitled “Left-Leaning ‘Wild Goose’ Festival Draws Ire of Evangelicals,” the Christian Post reports:
While evangelicals say the attempt to revive the Emerging Church Movement is doomed to yet another failure, Wild Goose proponents think it is “unstoppable.”
“In the spirit of vibrant, category-defying Celtic Christianity, we saw our desire embodied in the Celtic Church’s way of speaking about the enigmatic Holy Spirit: The Wild Goose, who wanders where she will. Who can tame her? No one. Far better it is to embark on a Wild Goose Chase, and see the terrain of our faith be transformed,” the organizers say on the festival’s website. (source)
Lighthouse Trails responds to this idea of the Holy Spirit:
Translated, what that means is that Christianity cannot be defined, or confined, to one particular set of beliefs (doctrine), that it is always changing, always transforming (thus the Bible, as Phyllis Tickles says, is a nice poetic book of beautiful stories, but not an authority from God). This has been the mantra-cry of the emergent church (see Faith Undone for a history of the current emergent church). Today, the emergent church has evolved into a full-blown Eastern-style mysticism-energized, quasi-Marxist, liberal, anti-atonement, pro-homosexual marriage ”community.” (source)
To Wild Goose Festival participants, “justice” looks much like any other heathen festival of music, dancing, art and community. In fact, they take inspiration from this concept “as well as many events such as . . . Burning Man.” Burning Man is another annual festival of tens of thousands who gather in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to celebrate community, art, “self-expression,” and “self-reliance.” The festival looks like hell on earth with its fiery exhibits of debauchery. And this is what Wild Goose is compared to on its official website?
Lighthouse Trails alerts Christians of the significance of Philip Yancey joining the Emergent festival:
[W]hen you have one of the most prolific evangelical authors and an editor of THE Christian magazine – Philip Yancey – along with a formerly traditional evangelical publishing company – Intervarsity Press – participating in an event like the Wildgoose Festival, you can see how much the emergent church has influenced and infiltrated evangelical Christianity. And even still, Christian leaders and most pastors remain silent. (source)
Buy your tickets now. Do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry (2 Timothy 4:5).