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Monday, June 01, 2009

Biblical Unity: Separated at Birth

It is a tragic irony that those who have come to the Word are so quickly turned away from the milk thereof by those who claim to be charged with their care and feeding. The newly converted are immediately force-fed the strange meats of denominational dogma and theological tripe on which they can never grow. They can only become puffed up in the knowledge that is used to separate them from their brethren at birth. Where these would desperately need to learn to trust Christ in all things they are taught instead to rely on their own philosophy and understanding and to mistrust any who fail to agree. In this secluded environment they can walk only in darkness, wisdom becomes hidden and error goes unchecked.

We need not sacrifice the Truth in order to secure our unity, to the contrary, the Truth shines through in the light of our unity and our folly becomes evident. Impatience, self-righteousness and idolatry can lead us to believe that our perception of the Truth should be evident to everyone or even that our perception is perfect or full. We should rather continue in love having faith in the hope that, in time, Christ the Truth will be fully revealed in us all.

Who is it then that we are united with? The answer is simply Jesus Christ and those who are His. We that are His are made manifest to others only by our love for one another.

25 Comments:

Blogger Kristi said...

Kc, I grew up in the environment of which you speak... the "our way is the only way" sort of mentality. We were not allowed to fellowship with other believers just because maybe they used a certain phrase our pastor didn't like. It became a real stumbling block to me as I got older. Now, I'm learning the real meanings of Biblical unity and separation and it is so liberating!! I enjoy reading your thoughts on it.

6/01/2009 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Kristi it’s so good to hear from you!

Honestly I don’t think any of us escaped being exposed in some way to that environment. If we did it was likely for a much worse one where every error was overlooked. In either case disagreement and debate simply was not allowed for “peace” sake. We all ended up “doing” theology outside of and usually apart from our congregation and quite often fell prey to wolves.

6/02/2009 03:55:00 AM  
Blogger Missy said...

KC, I've been thinking about this post since you put it up. At first, I was like, "Yeah, I've totally been left alone. If I don't agree to the dogma, I'd be ostrasized!"

How quickly I've forgotten already the grace and love that has been shown to me as I start to open up within my congregation! Granted, there are a few who gasp, but they still have been loving and freely talk with me about my confusion/disagreements.

I honestly thought I would be asked to leave.

Just as it's important not to do these things you've talked about, it's important to test it. If I remained silent in my fear, I would likely have done the same as many had; either wrangle in solitude for faith, or disappear without a trace to do it all over again with another congregation. I think our fear of being separated from the brethern often begrudgingly forces us to drink the same old milk (koolaid?) rather than eat meat with the big boys. We have to be willing to be open - step out on that ledge and give another a chance to love us. It takes a little faith.

6/02/2009 06:16:00 AM  
Anonymous grandpaw said...

Morning,

I thought I was all alone in my theology ? I can't understand why some can just get mad because some words don't please them ! After all don't we supposed to go to church for our own good . In other words by you attending and studying Gods word you are supposed to take care of " me " first and let the Holy Spirit do the convicting of our own heart and then we become better equipped to share Gods Love as He told us ? Its natural to have disagreements because of how God made us but the Holy Spirit will help us judge for ourselves ? After all not everybody likes Turnip Greens and cornbread ??

Blessings
Grandpaw.

6/02/2009 07:28:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Afternoon Grandpaw. To be honest I don’t think any of us will be in full agreement until we all reach the full measure of Christ so sharing God’s love is the most we can hope for and more than enough for us in this life. ;-)

Missy I’m so thankful for the wonderful example you’ve been given by those who minister within your congregation. You’ve also made an excellent point regarding our responsibility to our ministers and I don’t want to diminish it in any way. You’re right in that we really must be honest in our communication with one another or there’s no hope from the start. I would like to make a distinction between my point and yours and your thoughts here really do provide for the perfect illustration. Where you considered the love you were shown by those who have ministered to you I am pressing for those who minister to consider their love and devotion to see if it is conditioned upon doctrinal agreement or founded on the love of God in Christ.

6/02/2009 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger Missy said...

KC, I was trying to set the example of looking to apply this to self. :)

I do know that my original fear was founded in real experience of legalistic dogmatic leadership and church membership, and witness of harsh "church doctrine" towards those in disagreement.

6/02/2009 05:27:00 PM  
Blogger pecheur said...

Kc,

I agree. Let's teach the Bible to new converts and even to old ones. I've seen God's Word, just the Word, convict different people at the same time for different things.

6/08/2009 09:34:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Dead on Pech!

6/08/2009 09:50:00 AM  
Blogger David Wyatt said...

Just a great post, bro. Kc! It really blessed my heart. God's Word alone is the nourishing spiritual food our new nature craves & thrives on. The love of our brethren & sisters in Christ is the "seasoning" (Col.4:5-6) that makes it even more enjoyable! You are a great encouragement to me personally. God Bless.

6/15/2009 10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Bro. David your kind words mean so much to me. Thank you so much for that and for taking the time to read here.

6/16/2009 12:22:00 AM  
Blogger audrey` said...

Happy Birthday, Brother Casey =)

8/20/2009 12:58:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Thank you sweet sister. ;-)

8/20/2009 03:52:00 AM  
Blogger Rose~ said...

Happy Birthday to a great guy and one who I am glad to be friends with!

8/20/2009 07:19:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Awww, thanks Sis! ;-)

8/20/2009 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger David Wyatt said...

Bro. KC, unless you have objections, I would greatly desire to link to your excellent blog!

9/05/2009 10:08:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Bro. David I would consider that a great honor. I hope you don't mind that I had linked to you. It never crossed my mind to ask but I think that's a good policy and I will do so from now on! ;-)

9/06/2009 05:24:00 PM  
Blogger David Wyatt said...

Bro. KC,

I consider it a great honor & I appreciate it! God Bless, & obviously I missed your birthday, so happy super-belated birthday wishes!

9/07/2009 04:26:00 PM  
Blogger Kristi said...

Just so you'll know.... Been thinkin about ya...

9/14/2009 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Thanks sweet Lil' Sis. ;-)

I've been planning on getting over to your site and to get by with well wishes to your brother too.

9/15/2009 06:54:00 AM  
Blogger Peggie said...

Kc,
I've been reading your comments on
other blogs and just wanted to say
"I appreciate ya, brother!"

10/04/2009 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Ms. Peggie,
Thank you so much for the visit and your kind words of encouragement! May God bless you Sister. ;-)

10/04/2009 11:42:00 PM  
Blogger Duane WATTS said...

HI KC!
I want to ECHO ECHO echo what Peggy said. I've seen you at Antonio's, Roses and Sancs and wanted to thank you for your thoughts. We fg'rs are a rare breed anyhow; should we further divide until each splinter is microscopic? That will magnify GOD!
At work there are a couple of brothers with whom I consol myself in the faith. The hard part is, I have serious doubts whether they are in the faith. When we discussed "soli fide" (not in so many words), they had to conclude in support of Lordship Salvation, that salvation "is not a gift". I left it at that, trusting that the SPIRIT will use the scriptural food they receive weekly to kick them in the head.
The point is, I often feel all alone out here, and youse guys are some of the only comfort I got. If you want to seperate from me because I don't dot Hixon's I's, or cross Antonio's T's...well then I guess the SPIRIT will carry me.
But it's better with two, or four or sixteen....
I've been dying to share this:
I've led a very small (5-7 adults) Sunday School class, these past 3 weeks. Work schedule will not allow me to continue for the next month. I was going to use Dr Badger's TULIP article on "Total Depravity" (it's in GES Journal and an excellent resource). I did distribute the material, but the Lutheran pastor dissuaded me from using my lesson plan (was afraid it would be out of reach for the class). I really agonized where to go instead. I decided to do a focused study of the Gospel of John for 3 wks. After 2 wks, I worked overnight 12 hours before this Sunday's 3rd class, so I was exhausted, and knew if there was going to be any success at all it was going to have to come from the SPIRIT.
I continued with a review of where we had been. I had used John Niemela's illustration of John 11, Jesus' interchange with Martha, from the Spring 2003 JOTGES. JESUS says I AM THE RESURRECTION and THE LIFE. He immediately defines terms:I AM THE RESURRECTION: He who believes in me though he dies, yet shall he live. I AM The LIFE: He who lives and believes in me will never die. First week it wasn't hitting home, so I asked: how is it possible that "He who lives and believes in ME will never die"?
So on our review this Sunday, reiterating that those who believe in Him now have now everlasting life now. One student finally says: Then why aren't we hearing this from there(motioning toward the pulpit)? CHA-CHING! This is where in sales (when I was a salesman), I was supposed to pull out the contract and say "would you like that in blue or red? and do you want the extended warrantee?" Except here (contrary to LS)there is no contract. At least three people consented to what I was saying. I am in someone elses house here (Lutheran Church) so I have to be sensitive. The one brother says "well, baptism (Christining) is more for the parents, to dedicate their children, the children still have to be taught and still have to believe for themselves".
The student who asked about the pulpit expressed that she grew up in a Catholic House and everything was - behave or you are going to hell. She has gotten some liberal grace from the Lutheran Church the basis for absolution is there, but no basis for security. Please pray for these dear (new) brothers and sisters. Call them "T" and "H", and "W".
And please pray for me. God knows I need the fellowship, and some accountability.
Thanks again KC and all!

Peace and Love and unity in JESUS

Duane

10/20/2009 11:55:00 AM  
Blogger Kc said...

Welcome Duane! Thanks so much for the kind words and inspiration. I have to admit that I don't hold to any system of theology other than my own but I do dearly love my FG brethren and I hope you'll always find fellowship here brother. I truly appreciate your heart and labor on behalf of the brethren and I pray God will continue to bless your effort. ;-)

10/20/2009 10:05:00 PM  
Blogger Kc said...

Duane we (Corry and I and others here I'm sure)will remember your request in our prayers.

10/20/2009 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger Duane WATTS said...

Thanks so much KC and Corry.
God is good.
Duane

10/20/2009 10:31:00 PM  

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