Questioning Nearly Everything
From Constantine to the Modern Evangelicals
There are so many doctrines within the Church which we have embraced by way of inheritance and insistence. Some are proven by specific scriptures, often using flat interpretation (that is, the Bible says it, therefore it is the rule) or spurious assumptions. Many go back to the days when Constantine befriended the Church, while many others developed with each new denomination or movement. These range from church titles to rites and practices, as well as what it is to share the Gospel and even what the Gospel really is. We have watered down the ideas of fellowship, over-complicated the ideas of salvation and repentance and gotten lost in the mire of bi-laws and practices.
Let's walk together and dissect some of these old chestnuts. The goal is to keep Jesus at the center, endeavoring to follow Him more closely.
He is the Truth
"And you shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free."
We Must Change
For too long, we have reached and reached, even strained to reach God. We embrace rituals, tactics, legalism and structure in order to please or even appease the Father. While much of this is essentially harmless, a lot has taken us away from what we were created for in the first place - a relationship with our Creator.
In future posts, the following can be addressed...
- The "Five-fold Ministry" and the titles and hierarchies therewith.
- What Fellowship really is.
- What love is and how it works.
- The real Word of God.
- The Nationalism trap.
- The Prosperity trap.
- The trap of wanting legislation of "our rules".
And whatever else may pop up.
In a similar manner to Nehemiah, it is my desire to rebuild what has, in essence, been torn down. Much of what will be written could be challenged by those who are fellow Christians and even ridiculed, maligned and denied by the same. That's okay, as long as any discussion is reasonable, peaceful and without accusation and name-calling. Oh, sure...I can take it. But, it is unproductive and not how we should conduct ourselves with one another.
Did You Ever Wonder?
Seriously...how often have you sat back and honestly questioned why we believe what we believe and practice as we do? Have you ever wondered what this doctrine or that rite has to do with being a follower of Jesus? When you hear a certain teaching, whether on TV or by your own pastor, was there ever something stated that either piqued your curiosity or raised a sense of doubt about what was being claimed or taught?
Go Ahead. Ask the Tough Questions
Questioning is normal. Also, questioning is not wrong. God can handle questions, whether they are big, difficult questions or seemingly inane ones. If He can handle them, we should not deny ourselves or anyone else any opportunity to raise anything...absolutely, anything...that concerns or frustrates us.
Let's walk this out
I will share what I have learned on certain topics and will welcome any other input or added information. Also, feel free to share any questions or topics you may want a perspective on.
Look At Evidence
"Take nothing on its looks; take everything on evidence. There's no better rule."
Too many doctrines are based on what is seen on the surface in English translation. We should not be afraid to look a little deeper and consider other evidence toward any claims.
We Are In This, Together
As the Body of Christ, we are one. All different shapes and sizes, levels of maturity and even a few wounded and scarred, out there. Yet, no matter who you are, where you are from, what you have learned, where you were born or what culture you grew up in, if you have decided to embrace the love of Jesus and follow Him, you are one with everyone else in this colorful tapestry with all the flaws and imperfections befitting of human beings.
With that in mind, we should be free to ponder, ask, agree or disagree, all the while focusing on the fact that Jesus came to get you, him, her, them over there and even that weird guy down the road. We each come with our own sense of how things should be, our own damages and hurts, our own ways of how we learn and process and even our own sets of victories and successes.
Jesus is our main interpretation, evidence and focus. We consider His teachings and how He did things while here. We can also endeavor to know Him better, by talking with Him and, mostly, listening for that "still, small voice". This is a "we" issue and not something for someone else to do for us.
Together, we learn and share and encourage each other toward Jesus.