Word & Spirit – false dichotomy.

The division between Spirit and Word is a false dichotomy of our time played out between conservatives and charismatics. Do I experience God through the Spirit’s leading in worship and seeing Him at work through the miraculous? or, Do I experience Him through seeing Him transform people from the inside out as they live in obedience to His Word? The answer must be a resounding YES to both.

We should learn from the mistakes of the great false dichotomy of the last century: The division between Love and Truth  played out between liberals and evangelicals. At its heart was the question of the modern age, ‘Who is right?’ In the battle between liberals and evangelicals when the love of God was pitted against the truth of God, those who loved separated themselves from truth.  They tried to be the source of love and spiritually died. Those who focused on Truth to the denial of love, lost the heart of Christ’s love becoming cold and hardened to people’s felt needs. The Church became weaker and to this day is suffering.

The tragedy of our church is the split between those who seek to control behaviour through the Word while ignoring the Spirit who makes the transformation possible. And those who want the power of the Spirit while ignoring the inconvenient truths of the One who sent Him. Without both our spirituality becomes self-centred.

 

Facing reality

Why would God allow a law changing the understanding of marriage to go through parliament? As I pondered in prayer, it occurred to me that the Lord is being consistent. How many times I have looked at a situation getting worse and thought, I must do something about that. I put it off only to see it move from an irritation to a major problem in the blink of an eye! I am left kicking myself for my complacency. God gave plenty of opportunity to act, but I was too busy with my agenda to be concerned for what He thought was important. So how has the Church in the UK been complacent? I cannot remember hearing a talk focused on a moral issue in decades! Not even on stealing or lies.

How can we expect God to stop the world changing marriage when we have been unwilling to teach on such issues? What hypocrisy for bringing up the subject now. I include myself here. I have favoured speaking on our relationship with God much more than on how that relationship needs to be worked out in the way we live.  When working on the ‘www.beingrecreated.org’ website the pages concerning how we should live were some of the last to be added. It seems that we as Christians are so concerned about being nice, reaching out to our fellow man, and a nice relationship with God that we have forgotten that we walk with a Holy God.