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Sola Scriptura?

It has occured to me that my LJ has been getting a bit heavier of late...more serious stuff and less trivial. Oh well...

My recent ponderings have been on the nature of Scripture. It has occured to me that sola scriptura, the line used by Luther meaning 'Scripture alone' as a guide for life and faith, is a fairly absurd proposition. Essentially, to hold this doctrine is not putting one's faith in Christ, but in the Scripture, which contravenes the teaching of Scripture, which leads us into a netherworld of paradoxi.

It has been many years since I have held a view anything like Sola Scriptura, but I believe I am now going even further from such a position. I have long held that a relationship with God is the guide for life and faith, and that this is augmented and guided by the Scripture. To me, this is an important distinction, and is a common distinguishing factor between conservative evangelicalism and Pentecostalism, the latter has been more experience oriented.

Sola Scriptura falls down on a simple point. It did not exist before the Council of Nicea..people's faith was built on the teaching of the apostles, testimonies, and personal experience. In fact, the assemblage of the New Testament was an attempt to preserve these features. But Sola Scriptura's weakness is that it is not self perpetuating. It relies on its authority as having come from the church leadership and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Surely then, if we are to accept Scripture, we must also accept its founding authorities; church leadership and the Holy Spirit. How can we say that these have no authority if they were the very foundation of Scripture? Sola Scriptura is clearly illogical.

Balance

Ok, now I hope it was clear that my last entry was an emotional reaction. What a stir it created! It's good for us to think through the issues. But I must confess that the view presented in my last entry was hardly balanced, or even useful other than to begin dialogue on the topic.

Ok, let me try a simple argument.

Homosexuals and pro-homosexuals argue that they are born that way, right?

That is, they shouldn't have to exercise restraint, because it's natural, right?

So how come a pedophile can't use the same argument?

I am truly Angry and Disgusted

I honestly could not believe this; I am stunned, but it fills me with great anger:

http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/outcry-over-launch-of-dutch-pedophile-party/2006/05/31/1148956392681.html

Now, I'm giving the world a blast: THIS IS WHAT YOU GET FOR YOUR SEXUAL LIBERALISATION.

First you said it was ok to have sex outside marriage (1960s-70s) then you started saying homosexuality was ok (1980s-90s) and now look what's next on the agenda!

How can you not see that this is a progression of immorality that threatens the very fabric of society itself?! Can't you see that this is people losing standards, and that evil is gaining ground in our mainstream society?

You might try to justify yourself and say that you don't support pedophilia, but if you've supported the first two moves, can't you see how you have lent tacit support to this third?

When will you wake up and call evil what it is? When will you understand that the social and moral conservatives that have been screaming bloody murder the whole time that these sexual revolutions were taken place knew full well that if we started to slip down this ugly slide we would end up in places initially thought unimaginable?

CAN'T YOU SEE THAT THIS IS WRONG? And even if you can't, or if you do, then at least acknowledge that YOUR acceptence of fornication and homosexuality has led us to this position? That's right, if you've accepted either, I lay this at YOUR feet for creating a climate where this is even possible! >:-(

Us and the World

The Scriptures say some very strong things about how Christians are to interact with the world.

1 Corinthians 7:31
"those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away."

Also, Hebrews (11:13,15,16) talking about those who live by faith:
"And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them."

This is just a sampling of what the Scriptures speak of the world and how we, as Christians, are to relate to it.

It seems to me that we are not to get caught up in the affairs of this world, but rather focus on eternal matters.

So what of Christians in politics? Those seeking to make the here and now a better place?

For me, I couldn't join the Family First party. Even though I support them, and will vote for them, I couldn't join and be an activist. It felt wrong. It felt like tying myself up to this world, rather than seeking the eternal Kingdom.

Similarly, those setting up Christian empires on this earth. Is that what God really wanted? To have a big 'ministry'? Is that it?

Are we as Christians really getting the point? Are we actually limiting the power of God by living in our Christian walls, living good lives but trying our best not to meet too many 'worldly' people who make us feel uncomfortable with their views?

I think something is seriously amiss with the far Christian right...
It's one thing to criticise contemporary culture from an aloof perspective. To look down on it, to judge it, is a poorly concealed attempt to justify one's own present condition. Even if the conclusions are true, emotionally you are adding to the problem, not alleviating it.

It's something else again to engage with it. To understand those entangled in it, and to love them through it.

That is What Jesus Would Do.

Gospel of Judas, aye?

Great article on the new found 'gospel'.

http://www.tektonics.org/garagesale.html

The thing I love most is how it cuts through the bias of modern media.

Back on the 29th of March

In awe of Him, fearing His greatness
And yet touched by the love He gave
I offer Him my all, how can I please you?
How can I serve you with this soul you saved?

Blameless living He replied without pause
Live well, admirably, beyond reproach
Renounce all sins, be they laziness or pride
In new living I'll be your coach.

I want to take pleasure in your rising
To be honoured in your speech
That your work would honour me
That many souls will be reached.

I am floored with fear and trepidation
I know this is no simple task
If I went at it with all my might
I'd only fulfil some of what He asked

Then do that much He said
I only ask for what you can do
I take no pleasure in cowards
Who fear loss when they try something new.

"Give me boldness!" I reply,
Stoking the fire within my soul
Being willing to suffer for His name
To press on in all He has to obtain the goal!

Im writing for another site...

My celebrity friend Will has relaunched his nineteensix website...it's a site specifically aimed at Christians and for building them up in the faith. I've joined as one of its writers...feel free to check it out at http://www.nineteensix.com !

Faith VS the "REAL WORLD"

Early last year I did a course on Israelite history.

I knew that the course was run under non-Christian auspices.

But what I did not expect was the faith-destroying onslaught.

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The Irony

Does anyone else get the irony in this case?

http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/02/02/news/islam.php

A Danish newspaper published caricatures of Islam's founder Mohummed, pictures that depicted him as a terrorist, including one picture that showed him with a bomb for a turban.

Within days, the Muslim world was extremely angry. The newspaper started receiving bomb threats and the EU embassy in Gaza was stormed with Muslim gunmen.

Anyone else see the irony?