Ghan at Marla SA



When masses of Christians make religion out the knowledge of good and evil, make piety out of moralism and engage in moral crusades against ‘sinners’ – they model a narrow christ and a gospel that is ‘no gospel at all’, to use Paul’s words.

The law led to Christ. Christ does not lead to the law. Jesus presented Himself to be our life. He never advocated Himself as a new and clever way to manage laws and morals. Read the New Testament from cover to cover and you will not find a moral compendium or a revivified Ten Commandment. (Many Christians do not know what is in the New Testament because they have not read it. The NT is Christ our life from first to last).

You will find Jesus calling Himself the way to life without limit. John wrote, ‘In Him is life and that life is the light of all humanity.’ Jesus presents Himself as righteousness to be our righteousness as He imparts Himself to us.

The truth is that “
There can be no christianity without Christ. There can be no Christian doctrine without Christology. And there can be no future for a church that does not take seriously the dogmatic task of thinking through the implications of the biblical and ecclesiastical traditions and what they say about the person and work of Christ in order to equip the church for today and tomorrow…

A church that makes up its own theology and promotes itself as a brand while embracing and ignoring the anomaly of its teachings that define it as heretical and a non-gospel;   a community with a leadership that prefers inertia, denial and rationalisation to truth-telling. Or a church that is populated by people of influence who are denominational advocates’ rather than disciples of Jesus and genuine truth-tellers. Are destined to suffocate in their own deceit.

Rather than life-breathing leaders who multiply spirit and life, they multiply decay, implosion and spiritual death. There are communities of bent faith that ignore the issues of the past, that have no knowledge of church history and are quite happy to ignore the past in order to advocate their deviant doctrine in the present. Rationalisation and denial is their old and dead mode of ignoring their inheritance in Christ.

Theology that ignores the tradition [of Christianity] is a thin, insipid thing. It also runs the risk of repeating mistakes that could be avoided by developing greater familiarity with the missteps of our forebears. If theologians do not attempt to dialogue with the past, retrieving the ideas of past thinkers without asset-stripping them, paying attention to the warp and weft of historic theology and the way in which the past may fructify the present, then we risk cutting off our noses to spite our respective faces. We can learn history from those who have gone before us. But they can also teach us how we ought to think, and furnish us with concepts, notions, and doctrines that will ensure our theologies are much healthier than would otherwise be the case.” (1)

It was taught in my youth that tradition was bad and bible-based living was good. Of course the latter is good if your interpretation of the Bible is aligned with the teaching of Jesus, Paul, John, the Church Fathers, Reformers and Bible rooted theology of the present. But if it is a private gospel, an aberration that differs from the teaching of Jesus and the apostles, it is no gospel at all – just a fabric of delusion.
(1)  Oliver Crisp et all. Christology, Ancient and Modern.. Introduction.
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