Friday, July 16, 2010

No Creeds? Then No Deeds Either/

Rev. 3:1-6 (ESV)
"And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: 'The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars.
" 'I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead. [2] Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. [3] Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. [4] Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. [5] The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. [6] He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'
The problem comes full circle. Here we have a church as busy as a beehive, but there works are not complete. They are not complete because they lack faith. There biggest problem is they do not remember what they received and heard. They don’t care about doctrine, but works. Deeds not Creeds. And when they pit deeds against creeds, they are left with neither deeds nor creeds in the sight of God.


Steve Martin said...

They don't seem to realize (or care) that creeds come right out of the Bible, and that they are important to keep us anchored in Christ (oh Him).

The new lady bishop in Sweeden (I think) recently announced that she does not believe in the Nicene Creed.

Isn't that special?

Now she can get on with her meaningless (in the grand scheme of things)deeds.

Steve Martin said...

The creeds are derived from Scripture (is what I meant).

Scottydog said...

This reminds me of when I belonged to a "non-creedal" church. How's THAT for an oxymoron. They were very proud of the fact taht they were "non-creedal," but every now and again they would recite in unison their "statement of beliefs" that was pasted inside the cover of their hymnals. THis included a provision where they vowed to "abstain from alcohol and intoxicating liquors," or words to that effect.

I have a friend that belongs to, what I call, a "rock and roll church." He told me it is "non-denominational. He says they have no creed, but just get their doctrine from the Bible. I found this interesting and asked him if they had other non-denominational churches that they associate with or were simply a stand alone organization. He said they were part of a network of churches that teach the same thing and get their ministers from a certain network of seminaries. So I asked him if he belonged to a non-denominational denomination. Thinking about it, he said he did.

His church allowed him to deliver the Sunday sermon one week when the pastor was out. The message was recorded and he asked me to review it since he valued my opinion and becasue while everyone told him it was an excellent sermon, he felt I wouild give him an honest opinion, while he feared others were just being polite. THe sermon was on the subject of homosexuality. I assured him that it was, in fact, an excellent sermon as far as expounding on the Biblical position on homosexuality. However I indicated that while the sermon was a correct statement of the law, it contained no gospel, for those locked in sexual bondage. It was like a light went on and he suddenly realized that faithful preaching must contain both law and gospel.

My sister and brother-in-law recently left the ELCA over their position on homosexuality and joined one of the non-creedal rock and roll churches (read incognito Baptist). It's a shame that the ELCA has decided to abrogate the law, thereby making the gosepl irrelevant, many are leaving for non-creedal churches that really harp on the law. They don't seem to understand that the law without the gospel is ultimately an exercise in futility. It would be as if we only read the message to the church in Sardis and stopped at verse 3.

Bror Erickson said...

Sorry guys, been hanging with my son so I haven't been checking this too much. I have the posts on automatic.
In any case Steve that was a Finnish Bishoprette. But Swedish Bishops might not be much better.