Wednesday, October 27, 2010

denominational danger

I have my blue-eyed beauty to thank for inspiring this idol smashing, body building attempt at deconstruction.
Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple.
(1 Corinthians 3:16-17 ESV)
Believe it or not the above verse isn't talking about smoking, drinking, or chewing (or hanging with those that are doing, hehe).  It is talking about building up God's building, God's garden; the assembly of believers which is God's chosen temple in which to dwell.  You destroy the assembly, God destroys you...any questions?
Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21 ESV)
I find it telling that the apostle puts divisions in the same list as sorcery, drunkenness, and orgies yet we think it is perfectly acceptable to have a seperate church for every tribe, tongue, denomination, and confession up and down main street, USA.  If our doctrinal differences and our confessional divides leading to denominations are what Paul is calling rivalries, dissensions, divisions, enmity, and strife then our church buildings would be no worse with a hash bar in the vestibule, a dancing pole instead of a pulpit, and a community bath in the baptismal.  Division is just as evil.

Now if you that that is sacrilegious speech and it brings up emotions in you because you want to defend your precious building then my response is to think of how God's wrath burns against those who divide his family into these denominational battlegrounds.  If I intend to divide anything it is to divide God's temple (the ekklesia or assembly) from the idols we call church buildings that we have built to keep us apart.  May all of God's children come out of the buildings, denominations, and divisions and come together as one unified body.  If your building is an idol for you, you are pretty hot with me right now for attacking it.  If the building you meet in is not an idol for you then you probably think I should have been less, shall we say, abrasive.  Maybe so, yet I still pray that God will take the seed I stomp into the ground and have it bear fruit because I love my brothers and sisters and I hate the divisions.

Remember it is all about Jesus Christ.
For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
(Ephesians 2:14-15; Ephesians 2:16-22 ESV)


  1. So, by your line of reasoning, everyone who holds to any distinctions that divide in any way, will not inherit the kingdom of God?

    You have filled this blog with hundreds of strawmen to knock down. Do you really know anyone - if so, please point to something they've written/published, etc. - that really holds their building up as in idol? You might find one or two out there somewhere, but you write this as though it's a rampant and outrageous problem that has so afflicted the church for the last 1500+ years.

    And by the way, are you not causing a division by dividing from those who think divisions are, at times, important and necessary? Aren't you guilty of the same thing? Mmm Hmm...

  2. @covenental-I'll answer your question with a series of questions. Are their any distinctions in Christ? Will their be any divisive distinctions in heaven? Do you think that divisions in the church are okay? Do you think it is necessary to own a building in order to be a church? If not, why don't we sell all the public buildings and use that money to care for the widows and orphans and then meet in homes? Not very strawmanish to me....and no. I'm do not choose to divide myself from the divisive. I choose to rebuke, admonish, exhort, and correct instead. They sometimes do the same for me, it's mutually edifying.


As in a biblical church gathering, my word is not complete or final. Participation is allowed, encouraged and expected. Please, don't leave without adding something.