Friday, February 06, 2009

Follow up on Core vs. Crust

Kevin DeYoung followed up his original post about the Core and the Crust with 12 questions (part 1, and part 2) to help prevent crustiness. Here's a summary with some reflection of my own:

1. Do we actually care about evangelism? It is possible that we run the risk of being individual little Ephesian Churches who loved truth and holiness but had lost sight of their first love (Rev 2:2-7). In the context the love could refer to the churches love for Christ or their love for others. Most commentators agree that both are in view. The church cared a lot about being right but forgot the priority of love. Sounds like me at times. How about you?

2. Do we wear smallness as a badge of honor? I have definitely been tempted to this at times. People left the church/ministry. Why? Cause they couldn't handle the truth! At least that's what I told myself to make me feel better. This understanding was re-enforced by very Reformed and godly people. But has Jesus called us to be small for smallness sake? Can we be right and preach truth and winsome at the same time? We should, at least in my opinion, try.

3. Are our passions in the right proportion? Good thing to check constantly.

4. Do we (or our pastors) preach with personal, passionate, pleading? This isn't a 'drop the truth in their laps and see what they'll do with it' kind of business. As Christ's ambassadors we plead with people, be reconciled to God.

5. Do we know ourselves? What DeYoung means is that we're not all Driscolls or Pipers. Good on that, but it certainly is tempting to try to mimic those men and copy their ministries (other may be tempted to mimic or copy Bell or Kimball or Hybels, etc).

6. Are we fighting the battles that matter most in our context? I remember preaching a sermon in my previous church about Open Theism. Now it was a hot topic in our denomination at the time, but seriously, no one in the congregation I was in cared. It wasn't a controversy that touched their life or context in the slightest.

7. Are we bringing everything up all the way to the glory of God? Not so sure I understand DeYoung on this one.

8. Are we experts in Scripture first? For many Scripture takes a secondary role in their theological development. Some can quote Piper or Bell McLaren or Calvin more than Scripture. Not good, not good at all. Sola Scriptura!

9. Are we theological snobs? Ah, yep. I think we all are at times. Own it. Some are social justice snobs or evangelism snobs or Calvinist snobs are NT Wright snobs. We're human, it's what we do because pride runs deep.

10. Can we accept that there are Romans 14 issues? Without causing division, can we agree to disagree?

11. Are we resounding gongs and clanging cymbals? See question one.

12. Do we possess deep and pervasive piety? If not, what is our theology good for. The gospel is transformational, not merely informational. Right doctrine should be evidenced in right living.

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