Growing up, I developed an unusual pleasure of reading sermons from past Christian preachers. My favorite by far was Charles Spurgeon’s work. While my friends’ noses were stuck in Harry Potter, my own could be found in a book of Spurgeon’s sermons.
My dad would speak about him, and I was intrigued by this man’s beliefs and words. I remember being in middle school and my mom took me to Barnes & Noble one afternoon. She panicked as she could not find me. She began to scan the aisles, until finally there I sat in the religious section, lost in what would become my favorite book of sermons.
From that time I fell in love with studying theology and discovering what others believed. I was fascinated in how so many differing beliefs could stem from one ancient book. But it is that difference amongst beliefs and the fervor with which people speak of them that brings me here today.
When did theology become a battle? A war? A means of “winning”?
Today I cannot post a Christian quote to facebook without someone trying to dissect it or prove to me why it is wrong. Today for instance, as I read from Spurgeon this quote shone out:
If any of you wants Christ, he wants you; and if you long for him, he longs for you. If you seek him, he is seeking you” (Spurgeon).
I shared this on facebook and within minutes a comment popped up questioning the context of this quote. They stated that if Spurgeon was a Calvinist then he must be talking about God’s grace and not the fact that Christ pursues and adores us.
Can we not just accept the simple truth that we are wanted and loved by God? Why must things always become about theology and these silly theological labels? People ask me are you a Calvinist or an Arminianist, and I just want to roll my eyes and say, “Cooooome on…”
Does anyone else relate to this? Maybe I’m just in a weird circle 😉
I don’t care to be labeled as some sect and fight over details that we can’t be sure of till we get to Heaven. Jesus never once calls his followers “Christians” or even “believers,” much less boil them down to what type. The only term Christ ever used was “disciples.” I love that whole fact in and of itself. It is easy to believe something, but it is not so easy to be a disciple or student of something.
My main point in writing this is pointing out how the world has twisted theology into becoming an arrogant battle of the minds. I see that God has put a love for theology in my heart, as he has every disciple of Christ. After all, theology is simply the study of the nature and person of God. However, I pray that I may never get so lost in the theological details of my beliefs that I forget the simple foundational truths of the Gospel.
There’s a reason that Christ spoke simply. He knew there was no weight in bickering over details that do not matter to salvation and discipleship.
I pray for the day when all denominations that have the Biblical Christ as their foundation may come together and truly be the church. I long for the day when everyone can worship in their own way without being criticized by others. I long for the day when we stop asking about contexts to prove our points about things we are too small and foolish to understand. May we overcome the distractions of the enemy, and come together as one to truly love the unloved.
The Christian life isn’t about being right. It’s about being love.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed,” (Luke 4:18).