Monday, July 14, 2014
But that said, I thought Pipers introductory paragraphs worthy of comment:
For many years my conviction has been that Christian unity and Christian truth are served best not by removing fences, but by loving across them and having welcoming gates. I don’t claim to do it well. I want to do it better.Is "truth" really our ultimate goal as a church? Is that even really what divides us?
The point is that minimizing truth, or filing down its clear edges, or blending it all into one indistinguishable mass, or focusing on prayer, service, and mission, rather than truth — none of these produces unity that honors truth, creates robust communities, or endures for generations.
I would answer both questions in the negative. For one truth is but a means to an end - the end being our recreation in to the image of God in which we were originally created. While Christ is the only path to that goal, our understanding of Christ may vary on that path. We will disagree, but we must be most retrospect in dividing over those disagreements. In some cases, in fact in many cases, it is not a matter of truth - but perspective. I freely admit it is possible to take what I am saying too far, but I think too far may be farther down the road that John Piper pictures it.
But secondly I do not think it is theological differences that truly divide us - it is political ones. By that I mean it is questions of who is in charge, what it means to be in charge and who gets to decide who is in charge that really divide us. Its polity not theology.
Think about it - every church - EVERY CHURCH - has corrupted at some point. Every church has strayed from the truth. Why then have we divided? We have divided because the politics demanded it.
In the end that is a failure of humility, not truth seeking.
church humility truth