Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Seeking Depth

Gracy Olmstead writing at American Conservative:
Gingerich argues that such stylistic treatments dodge the real question: the issues of church authority behind the traditional liturgy. Cone says he sees “a sincere expression of gratitude and study” from his Protestant friends. But, he adds, “When I look at a Protestant service, it lacks the mystery and power of the body of Christ. … The whole life of the church, the prayers of the desert fathers, the blood of the martyrs, is more intimately connected in the Orthodox life than a mere stylistic change that a Protestant church can do.”


Nelson believes a sacramental hunger lies at the heart of what many millennials feel. “We are highly wired to be experiential,” he says. In the midst of our consumer culture, young people “ache for sacramentality.”
Authority and sacrament - seriousness in a sea of silliness - depth in the shallows - growth not just stagnation.

Here is the way I would put it. Genuine Christian growth, not merely salvation, but real growth in depth is in the end a matter of spirit, not intellect. To genuinely grow as Christians we must access that part of ourselves that is closest to God, something beyond emotion and physicality. It is that part of ourselves that makes the difference between babbling in church and genuine speaking in tongues. It is bit of the supernatural within our most natural state. Authority and sacrament are doors to that place. Some do gain access through gifting, but far fewer than those that demonstrate a gift. And even then it can lead astray. Unless tamed by authority and bounded by sacrament this is dangerous territory.

Authority and sacrament, the difference between a Sunday morning show and genuine worship. Where evangelism ends and growth begins.


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