The Great Divide

Read these words from Paul in 1 Timothy 1:3-4:
As I urged you when I went to Macedonia, remain in Ephesus so that you may command certain people not to teach other doctrine or to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies. These promote empty speculations rather than God’s plan, which operates by faith.

As I pondered those words I couldn't help but think of the great divide that exists in many of our churches today. Just look at the websites of some churches and you will see an extensive listing of their history and their past pastors and the exact dates of when a certain wing of the church was built and the times that they decided to change the color of their carpet. These churches may not be teaching "other doctrines" but based upon what they wish to show the world via the internet they seem to be paying more attention to the "endless genealogies" part.

The divide that I mention above exists when churches choose to invest their energy in traditions and customs rather than the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you were to ask the members of these churches if evangelism is at the heart of what they do, most would nod their heads in assent. If you dug a little bit deeper, you'll probably find that there used to be an evangelism program a long time ago and Bro. Ricky might or might not still go out visiting every Tuesday night.

I'm not trying to slam traditions - I like a lot of the traditions at the churches that I have been a part of - but when these things become the focus then we have divided the kingdom of God. Taking pride in our heritage has its place but it isn't our "Baptistness" or whatever else we cling to that sets us apart - it's our devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ. I honestly don't know and really don't care who pastored my church at the turn of the century. What I do care about is whether or not we are winning the lost to Christ and doing all that we can to bring glory and honor to His name.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amen Brother! I was just talking to some guys about legalism, I think they might go hand in hand. Though it sometimes can be important to know your church history so you can learn from its mistakes, and its successes.

Soli Deo Gloria

The honest hypocrite

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