The Necessity of Doctrine

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Aaron, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. Aaron

    Aaron
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    I read through Foxe's Book of Martyrs years ago, but I realized something a little more recently during a discussion with a friend of mine. I couldn't remember one martyr who suffered for giving to the poor, feeding the hungry, or otherwise meeting the physical needs of the indigent, though there were many who suffered that did those things.

    Those who suffered did so because of their doctrine, their teachings on Christ, or because their acts of mercy were in the name of Christ.

    (More to come... I accidentally pushed the post button.)
     
  2. standingfirminChrist

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    Awesome book there, Aaron!

    I wept while reading of many of the martyrs and their courage to stand and proclaim Christ in the face of adversity. Many godly men and women suffered untold agonies for preaching Christ and Him crucified.

    Some did not die. John, for instance, before being exiled to Patmos was put in a vat of boiling oil. When his persecutors realized God's hand was keeping him alive, they exiled Him to Patmos where he was given the wonderful visions we read of in the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ.

    My prayer is that we, as christians will have that same strength as the three Hebrew men, or that of John, or countless others who would not bow to the god of the world, nor worship his image.
     
  3. Aaron

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    (Continued from O.P.) It's just as the Jews said to Christ, "For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God," John 10:33.

    This came up because it seemed that folks of all different denominations can seem to get to together to sing and have a good time with it, but when it comes to worship, it's a different thing. For instance, I'm involved in a community choir a little south of here. There are Mennonites, Baptists, Lutherans, Methodists, Charismatics, Pentecostals...you name it, all joining together in some of the greatest hymns ever written (and some not so great, too).

    This led one fella (not the one I had a discussion with) to assert that "worship," by which he meant singing, was more important and powerful than "doctrine."

    I disagree. I believe that doctrine, that is, teaching about the Kingdom of God, is the central and most important function of the Church.

    Thoughts?
     
  4. Aaron

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    Amen!
     
  5. Helen

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    Music IS a great unifier in many ways.

    As far as doctrine goes, in the churches and countries Barry and I have visited, we have found that those who have read the Bible and are believers -- with no 'instruction' from this or that seminary or special book or whatever -- rarely have any real differences of opinion regarding what the Bible means. There are some questions, but never have we seen among the people the fighting and un-Christian nastiness and mocking that is so ever-present on Baptist Board among some.
     
  6. standingfirminChrist

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    It has been said that 'music soothes the savage beast' There is much truth in that old adage. People will gather to sing and pack the pews on Saturday night and stay singing for 3...4 hours, or longer.

    But Sunday morning, they look at their watches, shift in their seats, count tiles in the ceiling, or whatever they can to send a message to the pulpit, 'we are ready to go home.'

    Music may soothe the savage beast, but take the music away and that beast is still savage.

    Lead a sinner to Christ, feed them the Word instead of the world and they will flourish on the food that is meat for the soul.
     
  7. Helen

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    Standing, what we see on Sunday mornings and what we see here on Wednesday evenings at our Bible study is so different! Yes, on Sundays, people get restless.

    But we have a hard time getting them out the door to go home even by ten sometimes, and they arrive about 7:30.

    I have wondered why, because we sure don't have any music during Bible study! And I wonder if it isn't because even though Barry and Pastor Ken are leading it, everyone asks questions and presents thoughts and gets very deeply involved. We open with prayer after some chatting to see how everyone is and what needs praying about and the prayer time is about ten minutes long. We have a short closing prayer, too -- although that rarely ends things completely! And in between is constant study. Granted I always have tea, coffee, hot chocolate, and some snacks available.

    But that is partly because a couple of us are diabetic and it feels really stupid to be the only one who needs to grab a snack! So stuff is there for everyone.

    We have ten. We closed it at ten people and, because of requests from others, will start a Tuesday night study as well in May.

    I think the difference is personal interaction. And maybe flexibility? We have a 'plan' for what should be covered each time, but there are times when other areas of the Bible get dug into and cross-referenced and discussed.

    At any rate, it's not your fault in church -- I think it is just the way a lot of our churches are set up. 1-1.5 hours of a regular pattern, liturgical or not, and people's inner clocks are sort of set to that.
     
  8. Frenchy

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    isn't that what the EDIT botton is for, to go back and fix your mistakes? you have lots of time to fix or add to your post even after you made you posted.

    I much prefer doctrine over singing any day. [​IMG]
     
  9. mioque

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    Christianity is a religion that thrives more on orthodoxy (believing the right doctrine) as opposed to Judaïsm and Islam that go more for orthopraxy (performing the right rituals).
     
  10. mioque

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    While I agree with you on the position you've taken on this thread Standingfirm, there is an important secondary truth out there that a lot of preachers proudly ignore...
    The truth that a great many churchservices are excruciatingly boring and that those pews can get very uncomfortable after sitting on them for a while.
    I developed a lifelong soft spot for oldfashioned Christian art while staring at the ceiling of my church as a child.
    From the point of view of a 10 year old, staring at a well made glass in Lead window of saint Nicolas, beats staring at the ceiling (painted Bali Brown), which beats listening to the droning of some preacherman who could even turn the juiciest OT narrative into something dull.

    My finest moment as a verger was when I got comfortable chairs for my church to replace the ones that gave everybody backaches after 40 minutes.
     
  11. mioque

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    We are going to torture you to death for....

    establishing a soupkitchen!!!!!


    Just doesn't have the same ring to it.
     
  12. John of Japan

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    It is invariably the name of Christ for which people are persecuted. The Afghanistan Christian being tried for changing his religion would have no trouble if he were not an open follower of Jesus Christ.

    Luke 21:12--"But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake."

    In the 17th century in Japan, the Shogun began persecuting the Catholic "Kirishitan" movement, executing and destroying in battle hundreds of thousands of them. In one famous incident, about 40 men, women and children were burned to death, and even the children cried out as they were dying, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit."

    Those who feared persecution went underground and became "Kakure Kirishitan," or "hidden Christians." They worshipped Mary and the Baby Jesus by using a "Kannon" idol, which is a figure of a feminine-looking Buddha with a baby. In the 19th century, when Catholic missionaries once more were allowed in Japan, many of these "hidden Christians" once more became Catholic, but they had to be retaught Catholic doctrine, because all they had left was their idol worship. In fact, recently I read about several on an island down south who were still "hidden Christians," but they did not even know the name of Christ anymore!
     
  13. bapmom

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    The things we tend to enjoy more are those things which appeal to our flesh. Singing together in unity is a wonderful thing, it also appeals to our flesh....this does not necessarily mean it is bad, btw. But I think thats why that man said that he thought it was more important than doctrine. He got more satisfaction from it.

    What do we get our satisfaction from? Do we feel better about ourselves because we've sat and sung a few songs?

    The preaching tries to appeal to our spirit. The spirit is supposed to be in control in our lives, but I think most of us live with our soul in control (Using the term soul as "mind, will, emotionis.....my personality.) All of that ought to be in subjection to our spirit, which is in turn in subjection to the Spirit of God. If it is, than I bet much of the squirming we experience during the preaching time would melt away, no matter how uncomfie the pews are. The spirit in subjection to God's Spirit would sit and soak in even a boring preacher. In no way am I saying Ive accomplished this.

    If my spirit cannot even make my body sit quietly on an uncomfortable pew for a one-hour (possibly boring) sermon about The God Who I am supposed to love....than how could I possibly stay still long enough to be stoned for His sake?
     
  14. MRCoon

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    I notice when I want to listen that the Pastor's sermons are extremely good but when I allow other things to distract me or to think on what is happening after church I realize how boring a pastor can be...what's the diff? Usually my attitude :(
     
  15. CompassionateConservative

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    Amen! Society is more than happy to accept the benefits of faith-based initiatives, but yet refuses to accept the foundational doctrine that gives rise to those initiatives. Society can benefit, in their view, from the selfless sacrifice (expecting nothing in return) that community-oriented churches offer, but the day that those churches propagate doctrine, they become a menace to society.

    Answering your other point, I do not think worship is more important than doctrine. I do not think doctrine is necessarily more important than worship. Each is a command of Scripture. Further, such a separation of worship and doctrine is artificial. The study, teaching, and preaching of doctrine is a form of worship. And we should not encounter sound doctrine without worshipping God in gratitude for giving us His truth.
     
  16. John of Japan

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    I would agree to an extent here, but I would rephrase it. Your doctrine determines your worship, so it is primary. If your doctrine is that Christ is worthy of praise, than your worship will praise Him.

    Concerning persecution, if your doctrine believes that Christ is the only Way, that you have an eternal home in Heaven and that what you do here matters in eternity, you will be willing to die for the cause of Christ.
     
  17. Aaron

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    Music is only "unifying" because it affects us all the same way, but it's not a real unity. It lasts only till the music stops.
     
  18. Aaron

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    You'd think it would be obvious to everyone, wouldn't you? But so many "ministries" are elevating the soupkitchen above the pulpit these days.
     
  19. CompassionateConservative

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    And so would I probably. [​IMG] These are written on the fly, and I'm not positive that I'm communicating exactly what I believe/think about an issue.

    Amen! And well put! Honestly, I may use your statement: "Your doctrine determines your worship."
     
  20. Gold Dragon

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    You'd think it would be obvious to everyone, wouldn't you? But so many "ministries" are elevating the soupkitchen above the pulpit these days. </font>[/QUOTE]I would say that is more biblical than those who preach good doctrine and do nothing for the poor. There are many more instances in the bible of calls to care for the poor than their are to preach good doctrine, although both are definitely important and should go hand in hand. If your church truly does preach good biblical doctrine, caring for the poor and concern for social justice, which are topics laced throughout the old and new testament, should be a natural outflow of that preaching.
     

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