Wednesday, July 8, 2009

New Orthodoxy is Old Dogma

I have noticed a strange idea popping up. The idea that it is somehow wrong to allow scripture interpret itself and develop understanding from the study of same. This was the exact circumstance at the time of the reformation. Luther struggled with the idea that traditional doctrine as defined by the catholic church of the day was all that was acceptable. Any deviation would be heresy. Well, we are there again.

I won't embarrass the man who made this comment. He's a friend of mine and that wouldn't be right. He said,
I do not read the text of the Bible this way nor do most biblical theologians I know. Gene clearly differs and just as clearly believes he understands these ideas biblically. I humbly respect his view but do not agree. This is a case where Protestant individualism shows how easily we can, and do, come to very different views on what the Bible really says and means. I can't begin to explore this here but this subject interests me as a theologian much more. The radical individualism of our way of arguing and debating the faith is very hard to defend at all.

What makes this comment interesting is the idea beneath the surface that there is a right and wrong way to believe. That we should shelve our capacity to extrapolate and synthesize information and written accounts to come to a conclusion that holds whatever water we require of it. We are building a platform of understanding that we must stand upon. What and who do we trust to me is the real question that works against his comment.

The extended idea that somehow in some distant past a better student than I am came up with differing ideas and I must somehow set aside any questions I have in obedience to a doctrinal protocol I have not tested.

I reject the whole idea. I think the passage in the word of God where Paul instructs the church at Phillipi in 2:12 to:

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence--continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,
This in my individualistic theology has much to do with wrestling with the Word of God.

Now, I do NOT reject accepted canonical doctrine as is expressed in most Protestant churches. I do not on the other hand accept them as true without test. If I question a doctrine I will search it out until I come to an understanding in the Holy Ghost that works. I don't accept everything the LCMS teaches. I don't accept much of what charismatic teachers on TV espouse. I don't accept out of hand much of what preachers and teachers around Wheaton College's orbit might teach.

If it's not personal and individualistic with me, it's not real. It's theory. Theory and practice seldom go hand in hand.

We must contend for the faith. That faith comes from God alone. Don't go easily or passively.

At least as a Prophet I won't. Or what's the Spirit of GOD that lives in me for?

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