Monday, March 12, 2012
Well, Not Watergate Plumbers
. . . You have to define what a theologian is. His business is to make sure that the church has what I will call a pure water system—thinking of the word of God as the water of life. You could describe him, therefore, as a kind of ecclesiastical plumber, or sewage engineer. In the church, there’s always going to be muddy water, there’s always going to be mistaken ideas going around; theologians are the people whose business is to keep the flow clear and pure. In order to do that, they have to understand the faith as a whole, and that usually means that they have to do something like specialist work in the exposition of Bible truth—because the people who are stirring up the mud are also doing specialist work. . . . Any section of the church which doesn’t have theologians—as point people and whistle blowers and plumbers and water engineers—is, sooner or later, going to be bogged down in muddy water.How utterly disappointing! I was so hoping to find out why the church needed, you know, people that fix real physical pipes. Of course, there is the obvious - most churches have bathrooms and kitchens.
But more, it seems like the church breeds theologians and pastors and people that feed the poor - but the church does not seem to try very hard, if at all, to breed people that fix pipes, or build houses (at leas houses around the corner) - people that are accountants or lawyers - you know plain ordinary everyday people around the neighborhood.
Oh sure, we invite them in to collect there money to help all those theologians and pastors and feeders of the poor, but what do we do for them. Consider what our society would look like if all the lawyers were Christian, and all the plumbers, and all the used car salesmen.
Packer is right - the church needs plumbers, and carpenters, and lawyers - not the theological kind either.