Thursday, June 17, 2010


In a discussion with a close friend of mine, a ton of bricks hit me as to the church's many divisions.  There is one root flaw which causes (insists there be) multiple-troubled fruit.  It has taken me all these years to see and then it sorta just fell out into the midst of our conversation.

First, I've learned from my elders over the years that often what is placed on the table as the reason for upset isn't the real issue.  A family or an individual frustration is usually never truthfully presented; rather a superficial one is bantered as the culprit.  Such is the case with our root cause to division.

The church isn't divided over music style or support of orphans homes or women's role.  It is divided in these and many other matters by one thing....the belief that the Church of Christ is always and the only religious body to possess correct doctrinalities.  When any adjustment comes along which challenges our pride in being right...there will be war.

Now I think back when I first moved to Memorial Drive and subtle comments would come backed by half-hearted smiles, You seem to think we don't do everything right.  The innuendo is that I was out of line for such a conclusion. 

After all of these years, I have assumed I was in trouble with many in our fellowship because of my stance on the Holy Spirit working in our lives, or my friendship with guys like Max and Rick and Jeff.  Ah, not so.  I've been in trouble all of these years because I have spoken out against our audacity to believe we have cornered the market on understanding God, interpreting the Bible, and walking the path of Truth.

I don't change my mind nor my position.  But now at least I have a better understanding of what division has been all about.  It hasn't been about right and wrong, truth and error.  It has been about offending those who are sure they are the only ones right....and yet fear their own salvation.

God works with humility and opposes the proud.  Pride over being right is the root cause to a tree full of problems.


Anonymous said...

Amen to your last two posts...speaking of the Holy Spirit working in us. I think He writes your blog sometimes. Pride could very well be the root of it all.
We attended a Baptist (one of the "Firsts") service Sunday and the preacher even mentioned their tendency to believe that there wouldn't necessarily be any in Heaven from denomination "X". But he pointed out the multitude in Heaven in Revelation and that there certainly would be lovers of Jesus from every tribe there.
We tend to forget and dismiss certain things "the Lord said", don't we?

P.S. Speaking of which, my wife and I have been inundated with talk about end times and a 'rapture' not only Sunday, but from various other directions. We sort of dismiss Revelation in our speaking where the Bible speaks, too.

Anonymous said...

Doing right is important, but being right is far more important. I've met several wonderful people in my life who call themselves a "Christian" and exemplify "the way" in all they do and say, but because they were not members of the Church of Christ they couldn't possibly be "saved," could they? The Lord wouldn't extend his grace to people outside of our fellow-ship, would He?

Sharon said...

Love this post but the last 3 sentences really sums it up for me. Oh that there could be more humility doled out and less desire to be "the only correct one".

Anonymous said...

Wow, Terry. You have surely "hit the nail on the head" here. This has also been my observation, that there is always some kind of superficial reason that is touted as "doctrine." You are blessed with great insight!

Shelley (Longmont, CO)

Jim said...

You hit it square! Nailed it! It is not what we believe it is the protection of our "rightness." I had a friend tell me one time that they did not see anything wrong or sinful in using instruments in worship... they went on to say that "but if a Church of Christ uses them then it is wrong and sinful." It is odd thinking but very common.

Greg England said...

Terry, do you remember the old Christmas tree light sets that were wired in a series ... so if one light went out, they all went out? That's the way we were in our tradition. Spiritually wired in series so that if we were wrong on any one thing, we faced the possibility of being wrong on everything, which was an impossibility. So we were right. On everything.

Excellent thoughts ... again. And how ironic that (as you pointed out) those who were so certain they were right on everything seemed to always fear their own salvation?

jason reeves said...

Thank you my friend....

Glory to God!