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Wednesday, September 28, 2005

How firm a foundation


There are many believers who claim to follow the teachings of one man or another. It is certainly true that God has blessed the Church with many wonderful teachers throughout history and today we benefit greatly from their devotion to the study of the scripture, but is it good to build our faith upon the understanding of one man or another?

4For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?

5Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?

6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.

7So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

8Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.

9For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.

10According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.

11For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 3 (KJV)

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11 Comments:

Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

I do not think it is a bad thing. I think it CAN be a bad thing, but if taken correctly it is not. Consider the modern day equivalent. I am of Calvin. I am of Arminias (which really means I am of Pelagius...but that is a despute for another time).

But there is nothing wrong with following the teaching of one man. Paul followed the teaching of his teacher (cannot think of his name right now..starts with a 'g'), until the correct time when he moved up to a much more valuable teacher (Christ).

We cannot forget either that Paul said to follow him as he followed Christ. Why then could I not follow Lewis (or Sproul, or Bonhoeffer, or Schaeffer) as they follow Christ?

9/29/2005 05:07:00 AM  
Blogger Kristi said...

I think it is good and helpful to follow the teachings of a man, if his teachings line up with the doctrines of the Bible.

However, I think it could be dangerous to base our FAITH totally upon the understanding of a man, because we are limiting ourselves to that person's understanding. Maybe God wishes to reveal some truth to us which that person does not yet understand.

And if that person we are basing our faith on happens to be a modern-day counterpart, what happens if they stray from the truth? Do we follow them straight into their error because we are accustomed to following their teaching?

9/29/2005 07:47:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Adam your reference to time, in particular the “right” time, sent me into that glossy-eyed daze again. We really need to dive into that one day. I think you hit on my point in this post when you quoted Paul, “as I follow Christ”.

Kristi the phrase, “line up with the doctrines of the bible” is exactly my point. With the scripture I offered here I hoped to draw attention to the fact that we are responsible to God for what we believe, do and say; how we live.

I suspect that in this scripture Paul was making a point that there should be no division between believers because of their teachers as we are all part of Christ and each of us are personally responsible to God for how we build our own faith, in spite of what someone else might teach.

9/29/2005 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger Matt said...

I, for one, will only follow the teachings of a woman ;-)

9/29/2005 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Matt do you theologically liberal fly-by-night part-time bloggers think you can just zoom in and make remarks like this? Well do you?.....Okay....I guess you can.

Miss you being around brother. ;-)

9/29/2005 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

Women are good...

9/30/2005 05:56:00 AM  
Blogger Zeke said...

Sofyst, that was 'g' as in Gamaliel. And for my part in this debate, I think that Paul's teaching about not being 'of' a particular man's teaching applies equally to denominations. I attend an AoG church, but I am not 'of' the Assemblies just as I wasn't 'of' Calvary Chapel before that.

9/30/2005 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Zeke I agree. I think it much more important to seek His will in our choice of assembly.

9/30/2005 03:17:00 PM  
Blogger nathaniel adam king said...

Gamaliel! That is it. I was too lazy to look it up at the time. Yet, I remember the spot in which it speaks of him.

I think I understand your point. And I concur. Despite me being a Southern Baptist, I am not a Southern Baptist (ignoring of course the apparent contradiction that I just made). I am a follower of Christ, I am also a member of the Southern Baptist convention.

I prefer the label of being a 'reformed Jesus lover' myself actually...

10/01/2005 12:41:00 AM  
Blogger jgaoehals14962 said...

The Scripture actually gives us... no Christ, gives us teachers and preachers as gifts to the body so that we can learn and do the work of the ministry (Ephesians 4). So to ignore the godly men who have gone before us is to ignore the very gifts that Christ has given to His bride.

Most of your posts are correct, that we should take what these former teachers have taught and line it up with Scripture to see if what is said is true to Scripture, in light of the full counsel of God, not just one passage or two.

I think what bothers me most is when someone finds out my label and quickly discounts why I hold to the positions that I do. Labels are necessary in a fallen world, but we need to at least listen to one another, and Bereanize it, before we dismiss it.

BTW, I'm Presbyterian and I do believe in denominations becuase I don't believe that churches were to be lone outposts with no accountability to fellow congregations (Acts 15), and I am a Calvinist because Calvinism is centered upon the Sovereignty of God in all things, and gives God the most glory (leaving no room for man to boast). I am also Reformed in my convictions, meaning that what those in the Reformation were fighting for, is still the truth that we need to fight for today.

All these are labels that I don't mind wearing or sharing because they help us understand how it is that we understand the Scripture.

And yes, I do love Jesus Christ with a passion. That is what drives me to understand theology (the study of God), and sound doctrine (the study of what the Bible teaches).

BTW, I do have a similar post at my site.
http://timothysthoughts.blogspot.com/
God bless

10/03/2005 12:32:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Pastor Timothy and I cross-posted simultaneously and my reply is on his site.

To all;

I think that what Pastor Timothy has posted goes right to the heart of why I wrote this article. I love every teacher I’ve ever had and the ones from history as well yet none of them agree completely. Some seem almost diametrically opposed. I don’t believe this fact should separate us. There is only one label that works for me (although many, maybe even some of you, would add more) and that is “believer”. I don’t fault anyone for identifying themselves by theological labels, rather those that would find occasion in that to cause division. Our love for one another should not be dependant upon our agreement in understanding but upon our common foundation.

10/03/2005 01:55:00 PM  

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