I have been studying and teaching Bible doctrine for over 48 years and the shepherding teacher for home based Churches. Sola Scriptura
A Boilerplate - Unchanging Statement of Facts
The Preface - What Brought This On?
On social media recently, I challenged one’s dogmatic statement that you had to have communion every week or you were not a true believer. I am not here to discuss my answer, but the content of their online rebuke towards my position. It was very obvious that it was not the product of the individual’s personal study. It was a bona-fide boilerplate copy of their church held doctrine. It was long, very detailed and with lots of ‘scriptural’ support or so they think. When reviewing the scriptures they purported as their backup to their position I found four major problems. First and foremost language problem in Greek, several were out of context, others required personal interpretation [a biblical no-no] and avoidance of scriptures that just might not fit their argument or at least cast some doubt.
This is the state of most churches worldwide during these perilous last days. People without the ability to hear the Word and who cannot reason for themselves as one in Christ.
Zombies Are Real and Live Among Us.
Churches Have Become the Haven of Religious Zombies
Karl Marx once wrote: Religion is the opiate of the masses. Marx observed people having a form of religion but not displaying the power of which the scriptures speak. [See 2 Timothy 3:5] We have a world of dead people trying to act as if they are alive but without the peace that passes all understanding. Marx was mostly correct and dead people populate the churches.
Per the dictionary, a couple of interesting definitions for zombie: 1) a person or reanimated corpse that has been turned into a creature capable of movement but not of rational thought, which feeds on human flesh, and 2) a person who is or appears lifeless, apathetic, or completely unresponsive to their surroundings.
Sadly, both definitions fit today’s gatherings void of sound doctrine:
- Both the ear tickling preachers and their followers appear to be alive; they are capable of movement but not of rational thought based upon the fact that man shall live by every Word of God.
- These leaders do feed upon human flesh for without their captivated following they might be relegated to actually having to work for a living. They are leeches living off of the lifeblood of others. This does not affect only the mega churches but is found in your smaller local assemblies; followers feeding off of the energy of others of like-mind.
Zombies beget more zombies; the followers themselves become lifeless and apathetic to the written Word; totally unaware that judgment is coming but like lemmings, continue on their merry way to perdition.
The world lives and dies by self-perceived rational thought and within the churches the same rule holds true. As Paul stated in 1 Corinthians 13:11, as a child he spoke, reasoned and thought as a child but NO MORE. Rational thought based upon anything other than a clear understanding of the Word, is to be without having the mind of Christ; for all true believers have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2:16
People Have Been Straining to Hear What They Want to Hear for Centuries.
Can a Dead Man Hear? This is a Real Question.
Rational thought must proceed from the ability to read and / or hear with understanding. Ask an atheist, an evolutionist or Buddhist what is their understanding of life as a whole and you will get a very clear explanation based solely upon their reasoning ability. Christians are no different in the respect that when we use our own perceived reasoning, we get ourselves into trouble. Every true believer knows this to be a fact; otherwise the Word found in Hebrews 12:5-8 and 1 John 1:8-10 would become meaningless. Per Shakespeare, herein lies the rub: if one’s reasoning is dictated by a church’s doctrinal statement or another person’s belief system, one may not be alive in Christ.
We who believe, were once ‘dead in trespasses and sins’ [Ephesians 2:1] but praise God we have been made alive in Christ and a new creation: we are not the same person we once were. In the beginning we were like sponges, soaking up the Word as fast as it was being preached and taught. But like the seeds that fell on the wayside without understanding or in the stony places though received with joy though without root in themselves [Matthew 13:18-22] they become victims of wicked schemes or tribulation to fall away from the Truth. Some, to seek truths more to their liking [religionists] while others forsake all forms of religion and go their wicked way. My concern is for the religionists that have beguiled many.
The religionists truly believe there is an accountability to God coming and seek out those who can rationalize what they crave; a pass to heaven. In this respect a great number of churches and the cults have much in common, such as:
- An all inclusive atmosphere, come one, come all; we will see to your spiritual needs. [What happened to come out from among?]
- Strict guidelines for membership and maintaining said membership.[I thought the vetting process was completed upon the cross.]
- The Word and its meaning controlled by the professionals or the self-appointed leadership. [You do know that the Word is alive - hint: Hebrews 4:12?]
- The traditions of men becoming paramount, to maintaining one’s said status within the fellowship. [Remember Jesus blasted the Pharisees for departing from the Truth and teaching the traditions of man.]
- Works are a dominant theme in maintaining their salvation. [Strange, works cannot save a soul but salvation now becomes the final determiner on whether one is accepted by God?]
- Teaching all their followers that should they depart from their doctrines and/or church’s established membership requirements, they are then in danger of hell fire. [They have become judge, jury and executioner.]
David Campbell (author) from Winlock, Washington on October 27, 2020:
KC McGee, thanks for the input, it is always refreshing to hear someone say 'in depth' when speaking of the Word. I find it almost intolerable to be within an official 'church' building as the doctrine is usually a canned product [off the shelf] and toned down to meet the level to which they desire to keep their 'regulars'. When there is a bible study hour, actually more like 30 minutes and lot of chatter, it is often superficial at best. In our home church we try to dedicate at least 2 full hours to 'in depth' study coupled with fellowship; usually it does go longer. It is amazing to see the changes in our Lord's disciples as the Word grows in their lives. May God bless your study of the Word of Life.
KC McGee from Where I belong on October 27, 2020:
Great article you have here and it's so true. I deeply believe that we should study for ourselves the word of God. And I mean indepth study. In doing so one is able to spot false doctrine when they hear it from a pulpit or anywhere else for that matter. Glad I took the time to read your work here.