Doctrinal wrestling may be a sign of church health

20 01 2013

Consider the value of engaging current issues as they relate to Scripture, as purported in this excerpt from THE AMAZING POTENTIAL OF ONE SURRENDERED CHURCH (p. 55-56).

The scene at Antioch uncovers another hidden quality which helps explain the health and impact they eventually had: they embraced their faith with intensity. Their craving to know Christ deeply, their joy at learning how to live for Him together as Jews and Gentiles, their increased appetite to understand more of the mysteries of the Body of Christ—all of these hungerings made their Savior and their church the dominant pursuits of their lives. Their priorities changed, and their schedules shifted, in order to make room for learning God’s Word.

It would be easy for believers today to think that there is not that much left to learn. But many who have pursued deeper levels of God’s Word for themselves have found that the wealth of Biblical truth only gets richer the deeper they go. Not only that, many of us have let others do our thinking for us, especially when it comes to relating God’s timeless truth to current issues. Rather than merely listening to the conclusions of others, Christians should study for themselves contemporary, thorny issues that touch the Church and society—issues such as abortion, war, justice, terrorism, world religions, immigration, creationism, politics, stem cell research, and debatable lifestyle practices.

Why do we not wrestle amongst ourselves to gain greater Biblical understanding on these difficult issues? If we read Paul’s epistles through the eyes of first century Jews and Gentiles, we would soon see that he tackled very pragmatic and controversial issues, the likes of which many believers today would consider off-limits, unspiritual, or irrelevant. Most important, every believer needs to be grounded in the basics of their faith, preparing them for the temptations and testings that will come.

FOR DISCUSSION

  1. Using your imagination, what do you think it would have been like to belong to the Antioch church during that year of teaching?
  2. How much Biblical teaching is the average attendee getting through your church ministries? Is it sufficient? Is it transformational?

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