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Daniel of Doulogos Name:Daniel
Home: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
About Me: I used to believe that evolution was reasonable, that homosexuality was genetic, and that people became Christians because they couldn't deal with the 'reality' that this life was all there was. I used to believe, that if there was a heaven - I could get there by being good - and I used to think I was more or less a good person. I was wrong on all counts. One day I finally had my eyes opened and I saw that I was not going to go to heaven, but that I was certainly going to suffer the wrath of God for all my sin. I saw myself as a treasonous rebel at heart - I hated God for creating me just to send me to Hell - and I was wretched beyond my own comprehension. Into this spiritual vacuum Jesus Christ came and he opened my understanding - delivering me from God's wrath into God's grace. I was "saved" as an adult, and now my life is hid in Christ. I am by no means sinless, but by God's grace I am a repenting believer - a born again Christian.
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Daniel's posts are almost always pastoral and God centered. I appreciate and am challenged by them frequently. He has a great sense of humor as well.
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[He has] good posts, both the serious like this one, and the humorous like yesterday. [He is] the reason that I have restrained myself from making Canadian jokes in my posts.
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Friday, April 30, 2010
960: You Do Church The Wrong Way!
Your worship style is all wrong. Your programs are all wrong. The church decor is all wrong. The sermon length is too long. The prayer time is artificial. The singing/sermon time is all out of balance. Your small groups are all wrong. Your big groups are all wrong. The way you organize yourself is all wrong. Did I say the service was all wrong? The way you meet is all wrong, and where you meet is all wrong. In fact, everything you do is wrong. Yet for all that you saddle up every Sunday to slake your wrongfully motivated bovine appetites.

Okay. We have all heard how whatever church we go to, is "doing" church wrong. Everyone wants to have a "New Testament" church, but no one wants to admit that almost every church mentioned in the NT was only mentioned because they too were "doing" church wrong.

Yet scripture's criticism of these churches was not that they organized themselves in the wrong way - but rather that they conducted themselves according to their own leading, and not the leading of the Holy Spirit, both individually and corporately.

What made a New Testament church a New Testament Church™ was not the length of the sermon, or whether or not they shuffled their children out of the service the moment the singing stops - rather it was whether or not individuals in that church were surrendered to God in their will.

Your church is stale, and your service old fashioned. Everyone in your congregation knows that it could be so much better, but they have also, for the most part, become increasingly numb to what they are supposed to be, and moreso in the pacifying wake of each passing, slumbering year.

But always and ever the problem is identified as something external. As though there was some group of people holding the real go-getters back. As though if it weren't for the way we organize ourselves, we would be so much more. etc.

Blah, blah, blah.

The problem is spiritual inertia, and it causes the staleness, the deadness, or the slow decay that we see in some churches. But you must understand, that spiritual inertia wasn't produced, nor is it maintained or strengthened by the order of our service, or the manner in which we organize ourselves. Listen, the people who are hyper-concerned about the "way we do church" are the same people who are working in the strength of their flesh, and trying to squeeze out a spiritual sprint out of a new pair of shorts.

Well, I suppose I have penned better analogies, but I am going to stick with that one for now.

Look, do you want a new testament church? Stop trying to clean the outside of the church's cup, and work instead on the inside. What is true of the individual is true of the church. If you have a collection of believers who are sold out to do the will of God with all their heart, it isn't going to matter if they meet in a cave or a cathedral, if they sip coffee, or chew gum - you are going to have a church that finds its unity in their shared Savior, and in His service, and the rest will look after it self.

If you want to do work for God's kingdom, then make it your work to draw near to him. Don't make that a means to an end. Don't draw near to him as a rung on the church change ladder, draw near to him, and forget about the rest, because if you do draw near, the things of this world (such as how we should best organize ourselves) will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.

That isn't to say that you get all flaky with your doctrine, and develop an "anything goes" attitude in how you organize yourself. Rather it is to say that once you deal with the real problem, the other things will solve themselves, and if they haven't solved themselves yet, it is because, contrary to what you thing, you haven't actually drawn near to God.

What must you do to do the work of God? Believe on Him whom God sent. That's it. Do this and the other stuff won't be an issue. Try doing the other stuff first, and you will be labouring to build your house in vain.


posted by Daniel @ 8:44 AM  
  • At 3:03 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger Jim said…

    Seems simple enough but amazing how many times we miss the obvious.

    The biggest problem is our lack of hunger for true fellowship with God and His people. Our hearts are not prepared to come and meet as the body and hence we find fault.

  • At 3:20 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger JIBBS said…

    The REAL PROBLEM is simple.

    Some men have changed the word "CHURCH" from a noun to a verb.

    That says it all right there.

  • At 5:41 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger Mike Erich the Mad Theologian said…

    Trying to remedy our lack of spiritual vitality by tinkering with the organization is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. It is the Spirit that gives life and trying to accomplish things for God by external changes is simply the letter that kills (2 Corinthians 3:6

  • At 10:31 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger JIBBS said…

    Daniel (or any logician reading this)

    Could you take a look at John 8:47 and explain the logic to me? It seems invalid, but then again, I confess I'm not an expert.

    It seems to follow this form:

    If A, then B.
    Not B.
    Therefore, Not A.

    Isn't this a fallacy?

  • At 10:52 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger Mike Erich the Mad Theologian said…

    If A, then B.
    Not B.
    Therefore, Not A.
    Is a valid argument. (The proper name in modus tollens if you like big names.)
    If A, then B.
    Not A.
    Therefore, Not B is invalid and John 8:47 if not read carefully could be mistakenly taken that way.

  • At 11:44 PM, April 30, 2010, Blogger JIBBS said…

    Thanks Mike.

    I took it the first way.

    I just remember reading somewhere that denying the consequent was a formal fallacy.

    I looked for examples on the net and found a site that listed it under fallacies in the non sequitur category. However, the examples he gave seem to be verrrrrry poor and are not even following the syllogism itself.

  • At 12:01 AM, May 01, 2010, Blogger JIBBS said…


    I can tell it's Friday.

    Just went back to the site I referenced earlier and now realize I was looking at the wrong example (denying the antecedent).

    Mike, thanks for setting me straight.

  • At 1:08 PM, May 01, 2010, Blogger Mike Erich the Mad Theologian said…

    You're welcome, logic is very logical but it twists the brain sometimes.

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