“I am a bible-believing, Sunday school-teaching, six-day creationist, evangelical Christian, but there are truths in Scripture and questions and reservations I have regarding standard doctrines, for which I would be run out of the church on a rail if I were to state them.”~William Heath
Such is a quote of a man who I know from growing up in Virginia. He stated this in a survey of sorts that asked you to list 25 random things about yourself. The reaction to this statement was rather strong. Most of the reaction was shock and disapproval. People stated that if you were not sure of your doctrines you should not teach. Although different, my reaction was equally strong (and rather inspiring I might add!).
First off, I would like to say that you can question something even though or while you are accepting it as truth. One may accept the existence of a rock, but then question “How heavy is it?”, “How does one move it?”, “Why does it not move?”, “When did it get there?” “What effect does its enviroment have on it?”. These questions do not in any way mean that the questioner does not believe the rock is really there, in existence! The correlation is that while you may accept a doctrine as truth, it is still fair to have questions about it.
My own personal response to this quote and its opposing views was as follows:
Is it soo odd to question and not have a full grasp on foundational doctrines? Look at salvation. This is a doctrine that I, as a young adult who now teaches AWANA and has grown up in church, now have questions about. Do I question that any person can be saved? Or do I question the power of God to save? NO. However, I have questions about the hows, the whys, the whens. I have been confronted with calvinistic doctrine before. Many of the ideas are seemingly true. Much of what I read in Scripture points me to believing that salvation is NOT a prayer. Salvation is not an emotional response. Yet I have questions…Is salvation a moment or process? Is it initiated by us or by God? I’ve been to Bible College for a year, and I still do not understand fully the doctrines contained in the Bible. 2 Timothy 2:15 says “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workmen that needeth not to be ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth.” Study. Not finish studying. It’s a present tense command. Today, study. No one will ever really understand salvation or any other doctrine until they get to heaven. We are fallen beings and can never fully grasp the character of our God.
I teach my Trek (jr. high) class at church not because I want them to become church members who teach more classes, or because I want them to grow up and not make mistakes, but rather so that I can impart SOMETHING to them which will give them a hunger for Jesus. A hunger to know HIS Words. A hunger for a Father God and for an infallible God. I want to teach them there is mercy with Christ. I do not want to make them little robots who repeat vain repititions, but rather disciples of Christ who hunger and thirst after righteousness.
In the sermon on the mount in Matthew 5 Jesus says “Ye are the salt of the earth”
One characteristic of salt is that produces thirst! Salty popcorn at the movies can parch your mouth! Christians are supposed to be salt. We should be producing thirst. That’s what I want to do with my life. I want to produce thirst for other people.