You guys are just full of it today, aren’t you? 36 comments? Wow.
Ok, so, we agree the modern method of assembly and orchestration is flawed, correct?
We all agree on that? Maybe?
I’m going with the premise that we all agree.
If we believe this method is flawed and we desire an expression of fellowship which more closely resembles that which we find in Scripture rather than that which more closely resembles The Way Grandpa and Daddy Done It what are we to do? What’s the solution?
And no emotional responses. That pisses off Farmer Tom and I want to hear what he has to say… Er, what the Word has to say as apparently what Farmer Tom says isn’t worth Jack… Still, as a fellow believer, he adds to the discussion. In my humble opinion…
For those of you advocating FOR the Committee Church, what do you recommend to rectify this situation and for those of you/us leaning toward a more “organic” approach, how do you propose to implement your vision? Do you have a vision? Do you need a vision? What’s the plan? If even macaroni and cheese needs a recipe and it has neither food value or eternal value then certainly we must have a goal, a plan, a vision in mind for the concentrated and intentional gathering of those who call on the name of Yeshua, right?
I can’t remember who said it, but someone said (Erik?) not to throw the baby out with the bath water. Good point. Not Erik… Eaglewood… Mea Culpa.
Here are the things I see that we agree on:
First: The sovereignty of Scripture. With this small/not so small caveat…
Sola Scriptura is, at its inception, a Catholic theology which, while it does hold some truth is still attached to a cultic understanding and therefore I find it extremely difficult to support it as The Sola Scriptura, (cue angel voices, glitter dust and halos)….
I have been corrected by Erik (see comments) and thankfully so! I mis-understood what I was reading as I researched the concept and your forbearance as I re-form my thought… Ok, so Sola Scriptura is the belief that “is the assertion that the Bible as God’s written word is self-authenticating, clear (perspicuous) to the rational reader, its own interpreter (“Scripture interprets Scripture”), and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian Doctrine”, end quote. Gratis via Wikipedia, the most suspect research tool on the Internet after Google… *rolls eyes*
That distinction between Reformation Protestantism being the foundation for Sola Scriptura and not Catholicism is important to me and does effect how I view this theological viewpoint. I do still ask the same question… Which follows…
What does one do with extra-canonical references to say, the book of Enoch (quoted by Jesus, Peter and Jude)? It’s not in the canon (who decided what was Scripture, way back when?) and yet it was quoted… How do you rectify oral tradition such as Halakhah and תורה שבעל פה, Torah she-be-`al peh or what is more commonly referred to as the oral tradition given to Moses by G-d in congruity with the written Torah, תורה שבכתב, Torah she-bi-khtav?
Secondly, the gifts and offices were given and are still given “For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ…” Eph 4:12
Ephesians 4:7 is preeminent in position and I believe also in importance as it reminds us the first gift given to every believer is Grace… “ But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” It appears that we forget, all too often, that Grace is given as well as the other gifts mentioned in 4:11 to build up the Body… Digressing.
I don’t believe there is anyone here who would agree with the formula of one man having consummate authority over a group of believers, having the only voice to speak and the only one who hears from G-d. While that practice may be true to varying degrees within the individual fellowships found in the Western Church, I think, perhaps, we are all more in favor of a faith based in personal responsibility, personal accountability and personal initiative to obey the Word.
So, there’s a problem… The Word has answers. We have brains AND the Holy Spirit to guide us.
How would you propose to fix this? Is it fixable? Are we trying to race the Grand Prix in a boxcar when we’ve been given access to Felipe Massas Ferrari F60?
Or are you just fine with the status quo?
In which case, you may be finding yourself bored with this entire discussion and would rather just plan the next potluck.