Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Dont call me brother

Don’t call me brother….

I am not sure how to respond, or even if I should to the people who seem to think God is killing those whom in their own eyes are heretics.

I think Kyle Lake was far from a heretic.

Now, what I do see is this.

There are some whom seem to have placed themselves as the Judges of not just sinners but of fellow Christian brothers and sisters. Then they use, or rather misused scripture to back up their twisted belief system.

John in his epistles tells us

1 John 2

1. My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense--Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.
2. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.
3. We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands.
4. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him:
6. Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
7. Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard.
8. Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.
9. Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness.
10. Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.
11. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.

For those of you who claim to take the Bible literally, (which I find most say they do but really don’t and weirdly I seem to more that most who claim they do), notice again what John says,

“9. Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness.
10. Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.
11. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.

I find it sad that so many of these self-appointed watchdogs of the faith, miss this. I could name names, in fact I have in other posts, but fellow souljourners, will that bring back Kyle Lake?

First off I do not want to give the impression I knew Kyle. In fact I can’t remember hearing about him until this tragic event happened. I almost let it slide by until I came across some anti emergent people mocking his passing and claiming God was getting those emergent heretics. This left me stone cold. How can a brother be so filled with hate that they rejoice in another’s pain and sorrow? Jesus even taught to pray for our enemies, and yet, these people claiming Jesus, laugh and seem to rejoice in a brother in Christ’s passing.

Hate is not a Christian value, nor is it a Christian anything. Yes, we are called to hate evil and sin; yet, these are not people, let alone fellow believers. How do we hate evil and sin? By LOVE!!!!!!!!

We overcome evil and sin by the Power of God’s LOVE!!!!

Yes, judgment is coming and the wicked will be dealt with, yet for now we are to bring the love of Christ to the world in hope of their redemption.

I am sick of the Ingrid’s and Paul Proctors of this world who to me are hatemonger’s and stand on nothing but their own self righteousness and judgmentalism. I am sick of people like Pat Robertson who condemn entire cities in the name of Jesus, and forget He died for their sin as well as PR’s.

I admire Brian McLaren and how he can respond to his detractors in love and not react. I pray someday I too can be more like that.

Christianity Today has an article I thought interesting. It is about how Kyle Lake might explain his own death, by his own theology. Does Electrocution Happen for a Reason?

To summarize this all and tie it together I will quote the last paragraph of that article taken from Kyle’s book Understanding God's Will: How to Hack the Equation Without Formulas:

“…I would interpret Romans 8:28 as saying this: "Disappointment, failure, and suffering are simply facts of life. But for those who are actively following God, He can turn disappointment and tragedy into new life."

My prayers are with the congregation at University Baptist Church in Waco, Texas. May Kyle’s life be an example of Christ that one can cherish and carry as one grows in faith.

My prayers are also for those who preach hate, that the true Light of Christ be found and the hate in your hearts be displaced with the LOVE of Christ for God first then for your brothers… but until then, don’t call me brother. (John 18:19, John 8:42-45)

Luke 6: 35. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
36. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
37. "Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
38. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."
39. He also told them this parable: "Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit?
40. A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.
41. "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?
42. How can you say to your brother, `Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,' when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.
43. "No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.
44. Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers.
45. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.
46. "Why do you call me, `Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say?
47. I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice.
48. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.
49. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete."



I still have a lot to learn. Yet, I would rather be called a heretic than to spew hate from Hell and call it God’s Will.

Blessings,
iggy

6 comments:

Larry said...

Some Christians believe and act in some strange ways. Why anyone would think God selected Kyle Lake to die in this manner because of his belief system is totally ridiculous.

Things happen in life; if you mix electricity and water you have a problem. Those condemning this man could end up the same way; does this mean they too were struck dead because of their beliefs!

I had rather die trying to baptize someone than to die while twisting scriptures to condemn my brother.

Dan said...

As someone who doesn't like the emerging church I must say that the article you linked to was disturbing to say the least. From the very moment I read the title with its smug and insensitive pun I felt sick. I have had many disagreements with emergents and I may even throw the word "heresy" into the mix, but I can't even imagine mocking the death of a brother in Christ. And I say brother without even a pause. We can point out heresy in the church pretty easily, there's a lot of it around, but I know that I fall into heresy just as much as the next guy. I would hope that my brothers and sisters would help guide me back to the path rather than mock my fall.
What worse is this guy doesn't even read the scriptures he quotes!! All of those verses of mean behavior are written explicitly saying or with the assumption that it is done to bring the person back to Christ! And its theology 101 that you don't make hard and fast rules based on narratives (like the book of Acts)!!!! Just because Paul or Peter did something doesn't make it just. Just look at Peter's giving in to the circumcision sect, we don't see you justifying that just because Peter did it. If there's one thing that bugs me more that pompous asses its pompous asses with bad theology.

iggy said...

Dan,
Thanks for your comments.

I think if you really looked at the emergent movement, you will find it as something good. In fact many I disagree with also and they would disagree with me. But that is exactly the point of emergent... open non-judgmental conversation. Believe me there is much that make me uncomfortable in the conversation, yet, to have it out in the open and discuss it make much more sense than hiding it and denying its existence.

In fact much of the backlash that is emergent, is a result of this sort of abuse of authority and misuse of scripture. Much of my theology is based on redefining old terms in a way that those who have been abused can relate in a more comfortable way.

Imagine a person who only was taught discipline was to do with doing something bad. So to teach that person about God’s discipline may cut them off from understanding what it really is. Discipline comes from the word disciple, and is a constant guidance and building up of the person to maturity. Again, if one only relates to that word as abuse by a drunken father who would whip one with a belt…. You get the picture.

You might find this funny; I personally do not care if you or anyone agrees with me. In fact I sort of hope people don’t agree, but rather be open to think and accept that maybe none of us have all our little doctrine ducks in a row. And really, is it doctrine that saves us, or the Person of Jesus Christ Whom is the Living embodiment of all True doctrine?

I will say that I have met many of these type of people. The Ingrid’s and Paul Proctors in my life seem so far from the Jesus in the Bible. These are just modern day Pharisees to me.

Again Dan, thanks for your comments and thoughts…

Blessings,
iggy

Dan said...

As I have said before, I have looked at the emrgent church movement and I am not going to say that everything about it is bad. But I do think that it is far to volatile for me to consider it "good." I don't want to hijack this thread so if it seems that I am doing so, we can move this to a different forum. My main problems with the emergent church are as follows 1) its constant attempts to escape definition and remove itself from any one authority makes it impossible to take seriously. For example, to call something a movement and an open non judgemental conversation seems pretty contradictory. In order to be a movement there has to be a point you are moving toward. So it follows that there are paths that are judged insufficient because they do not lead to that point.
2) The cursory treatment of church history and theology given by emergents. Brian McLaren is notorious for this. His treatment of baptism in Generous Orthodoxy is particularly bad not only for his lack of sources sited, but also the lack of compensation for his obvious bias. I'm not sure which bothered me more in this particular section, the fact that his history was so wrong or the fact that he summed up the history of Christian baptism in little over a paragraph.
3) Lacking a sense of the gravity of the subjects being dealt with. I realize that the emergent conversation is meant to be open and all, but more emergents need to realize that they are tossing around the beliefs that Christians have spent their lives following and perhaps even died for like an old hat. With Mclaren again as an example, refering to everything as a sacrament and expecting all of chrisendom to jump on the bandwagon is insulting. Imaging walking up to a priest and telling him that the eucharist is no more a sacrament than "looking at the smile of a down syndrome child."
4) The lack of solid scholarly work coming from the emergent movement. Much of what I have read from emergents has been much more in the vain of the evangelical machine that they are trying to escape than truly scholarly work. I realize that it is a young movement and is a victim of the gen x and y disconnect with the previous generations leaving it severed from the traditions and knowedge that came before, but if this movement wants to become something truly substantial, it needs to bridge that gap.
I'm going to stop here for now because this is getting long. Again sorry for the possible hijack.

Anonymous said...

See if this statement could just as easily fit:

"I am sick of the Iggy's of this world who to me are hatemonger’s toward Paul Proctor and Ingrid and stands on nothing but his own self righteousness and judgmentalism."

iggy said...

Anonymous,

did you notice the date of this post? Wednesday, November 16, 2005

It is right after the comments that Proctor made concerning a loving pastor dying... and they rejoiced over it!

We were in mourning and all the while Proctor mocked... and Ingrid backed him up.

So, it is right them to gloat over the death of someone and mock and say "God got him"? You support that?

I am not sure I am getting how you justify those people saying I am not a brother and saying "God got him" of a person's death as loving...

Since them i have forgiven and moved on... I pray for these people daily... do you pray for me? And how? For God to "Get him" or that I am blessed by God... I pray God blesses you! I pray that God reveals His great grace and mercy to you in a way tha floors you and changes you completely! I pray that the best of God comes down and brings you closer to and deeper into His love. I pray that you grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

I am not a "brother" to those who hate... If you profess Christ then we are brothers and sisters... if you profess hate, and do not love your brother and sisters, then the truth is not in you. (1 John 3:10)

So which do you profess?

Blessings,
iggy