I am wondering if Christianity can become a mission, cause and lifestyle instead of slinking back into the profile of being “one of the major religions of the world.”
The decision lies around the word “learning.”
For some reason we have taken the simple message of “love your neighbor as yourself” and complicated it with doctrines, forming a morass of misunderstanding.
If we think that faith and hope are even close to charity, we have misconstrued the message of Jesus. Jesus came to turn love into a lifestyle.
He taught in parables whenever he was with the masses, expecting to motivate them to believe for mighty things. Only when the disciples complained about being confused by the stories did Jesus teach them further. His goal was to get these disciples out on the road as quickly as possible, to share their hearts with other people.
Otherwise we have the quandary found in II Timothy 3:7, which describes a church which is “ever learning but never coming to the knowledge of the truth.” Jesus said his “way is easy and his burden is light” and that the Gospel is so simple that a “wayfaring man” can understand it.
Why do we believe that writing 3,000 new books on church practice will promote revival?
Perhaps I am the hypocrite speaking to the hypocrisy, because I, too, scribe my essays, trying to uncover some hidden meaning.
There is no hidden meaning. Just as we would not hide the groceries from our children to find out how determined they are to avoid starving, God certainly has not withheld peace of mind, contentment and joy from his offspring.
The church spends too much time teaching and not enough time sharing.
We keep studying the Old Testament–which really wants to study the New Testament. As Jesus said, Abraham yearned to see the Messiah. Yet we think one more classic tale, another seminar or a sermon series taken from a different angle will suddenly alert the congregation to its true soul.
There are three things that matter. They are what make you a Christian or separate you from the Kingdom of God:
- Love your neighbor as yourself.
- Don’t judge people.
- Multiply your talents.
The pursuit of these three things will keep us busy for a lifetime. Trying to figure out what the Apostle Paul meant or what I Peter was connoting or if Hebrews was really written by Timothy will not make good disciples.
We think interactive church is having people stare at a screen and sing songs. Interactive church is actually when humans offer a testimony, which builds up other brethren to share, embracing and encouraging each other.
It is troubling.
We have become a church of learning instead of a body of sharing. Until that changes … we will be as boring as we seem.