Saturday, October 31, 2009

Love or Doctrine?

Or.... Doctrine or Love? Which one matters most? What is "Love"? Has it become so inflated that we don't even understand the meaning of it anymore? How much do we risk to stand on doctrine? Jesus, as our example, came and loved, but He never faltered on keeping and upholding His Father's standard. Over and over again I seem to be bombarded with these continuing thoughts.

Recently I have been reading about the ELCA's decision to accept openly gay and lesbian pastors (no surprise there). I was amazed at the comments made such as "this was a decision that Jesus himself would have supported because He loved everybody", how God has "accomplished something wonderful by this decision", that "homosexuality in the human family was natural and acceptable to God". I just about cried. Anybody wonder why judgement is knocking at the door?

Doctrine teaches us why and how we should love. When we base everything on loving each other we turn each other into self centered love seekers, rather than God centered servants. Without doctrine we don't know who we are or who God is. What is our greatest need? It is to be reconciled to God. Not to find joy and happiness in this life.

How lightly we handle the word of God. How easily we malign it to say what we want it to say. How careless we are to obey it. How long will God tolerate it? What a pie in the sky God we have created. I pray that He will open our eyes and reveal Himself. Rise up Christian and stand. Now is the time. Go deep in the word, teach it to your children, be brave enough to live it for Him, preach it in your churches. I don't think He's kidding.

And now, dear children (some translations use little children), continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before His coming. 1 John 2:28

A great response to the ELCA decision by Pastor John Piper here.