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Saturday, November 09, 2019

You Can't Give What You Don't Have

"[X] is very damaging to the witness of the church." Put anything in there you like. It could either be true, or it might be false. I know what's even more damaging: not being in the Church. This is the thing that drives me crazy about a statement like this from an evangelical: the referent "church" is empty; the speaker knows what she means. Perhaps some of the hearers think they know. The reality, however, is that there is nothing visible to which "church" actually refers.

At a practical level, imagine your exhaustion at having to answer for every single person who claims the name of Christ. Imagine believing that major questions of ethics--even dogma--were matters of liberty! And then, gentle reader, do you dare wonder why religious non-affiliation is on the rise? When people get tired of searching for truth, sometimes they give up.

Frankly, without a way to know that any one thing is supernaturally revealed,--or a matter of morals connected to it--it's at once fruitless and manipulative to say, "We can't just play church; we gotta be the church!" How will you know when you've succeeded?

The door is open.


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