I have attended many congregations and been under preaching that has helped me grow as a Christian. Early in my faith, I was introduced to a number of secondary Bible doctrines that I considered rock solid. These teachings appealed to me, and eventually, I refused to hear any Bible teaching that might contradict (or confuse me). As I searched the Bible to support these doctrines, I found proof texts and passages that gave me comfort.
I do not suggest this approach.
The one who states his case first seems right,
until the other comes and examines him.
Some of the initial teachings I believed and taught began to lose their hold on me when I began to ask questions in the congregation I was attending. The questions centered around a certain topic. This topic, I assure you, is not a cardinal doctrine. Church leadership was, lets say, not full of grace and truth. Be that as it may, I learned a valuable lesson. Freedom of conscience, in some congregations, can become very costly. But freedom of conscience is so valuable!
Understanding the ultimatums offered my family and I, we reluctantly left this body of believers. I miss many of those folks, and wish them well. But this experience taught me something very important.
I obtained clarity about believers unity. Healthy fellowship can not grow out of mere uniformity. Uniformity and unity are two completely different concepts. Uniformity is associated with group think, outside appearances and forced conformity.
Unity is found in the Person characterized by….
…humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
With true fellowship not dependent on uniformity of teaching, but found in the humble, gentle and loving person of Christ, I began to test my assumptions. Out of this exercise, I became quite surprised with the restricted faith I allowed myself to live in. During this process of testing, I began to write my progress down and found I quite enjoy it. What follows is this blog, which I hope will challenge you in Considering the Bible.
In summary, this blog is intended to perform two tasks.
- Wake at least one person up to the need of Considering the Bible!
- Allow open discussion on various topics. (I need feedback on my thoughts!)
So, will you begin “Considering the Bible” with me?