Monday, October 4, 2010

Replaced by Pointers

Several years back there was a billboard near my home with this message on it from the ever-so graceful and tactful Saturday only Jesus followers.  I remember being angry when I first read it.  I had passing thoughts of vandalizing it for spreading lies.  I hated that sign.

Years have passed since then.  Many things have changed in my thinking.  I'm no adventist (for sure) but as I drove past that spot the other day I looked up at that billboard sign.  Even though the adventist advertisement is long gone I remembered it as I looked on and I thought about religious traditions.

When it comes to questioning traditions we find it very easy to challenge other peoples traditions and consider them foolish, even heretical.  We never stop to think about the similarities between what we believe and what "they" believe and how we can be the same yet divided.  Sure there are lots of differences and that is why we find it so easy to point them out. We are supposed to be defenders of the truth, right?   But maybe there is more to it than that.  What if our defence of our traditions is an exercise in futility as we defend and cling to what have become meaningless and maybe even harmful practices. For instance,  in the case of adventism, how easy is it to get distracted on the Saturday versus Sunday debate and completely lose sight of Jesus Christ.  He is Lord of the Sabbath and is the embodiment of our rest.  We find our rest in Him.  In His finished work over sin, in His sovereignty in all things, in His authority and power and dominion.  The day is supposed to point to the Man yet the traditions took His place.

As we ponder this, let us not get distracted with adventism but think of other traditions, even those debated among more orthodox Christian establishments.  How many of our traditions have taken the place of Christ instead of remaining the pointers to Christ that they were meant to be?


  1. Thanks for the post. I remember growing up hearing the defense of how we did things, and the condemnation of those who did things different. Its easy to say that you only go by scripture, but not so easy to open it against your own traditions. Pride or blindness, I don't know, maybe both.

  2. If by "mark of the beast" they mean something really evil that was probably designed by Satan to deceive God's people, then yes, Sunday worship is an idol among believers as well as Saturday worship for the 7th folks. God designed every day to be worship, nothing less. One hour a week worship is a devilish deception akin to what the beast will do.

    Many folks think one hundred or more people in one room with one or more hired experts doing all the direction makes for better worship. There is no Biblical basis for that at all, only emotion - as in "the music was so powerful and the message spoke to my heart". These sound spiritual but they fall far short of God's design for full leadership reproduction and all saints growing up into the full stature of Christ.

    When 5 to 40 saints meet together for mutual building you have "the Word of Christ dwelling richly" and "with all wisdom" as in Col. 3:16. How much greater for the saints to worship 7 days a week, and when they gather, they share their worship to mutually build up the others. Our worship is not to be passed on to others. That's only a beginning of what God has asked for.

  3. Correction: "Our worship is not to be passed on to others."
    Our worship is to be passed on to others.

  4. lookingforchurch,

    I know. The tough part is examining the things I hold dear and letting them go as I allow the scripture to renew my traditions. Its like putting a part of me to death sometimes.


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.