Well, I’ve already had a visit from a “no doctrine” adherent to my blog, who left a comment. I answered it, and then he, after about a week, wrote a follow up post on his own blog. I answered it on mine.
I’m sure both of us feel we acted pretty poorly. I’m glad the gentleman is driven by principles he holds to, however wrong. He felt strongly enough about it to want to argue.
That’s a good thing, but what the problem is here, is lack of knowledge.
You can have misplaced zeal. I can think of no other reason why grown men would paint themselves and strip to the waist in cold weather at football games. And I’ve got to say, the dedication of American sports fans pales in comparison to UK Soccer fans, who’ll be the first to tell you the proper name is “Football”, and the American sport probably needs to change its name.
That’s a good example of misplaced zeal.
The thought process is one based on an incomplete grasp of the Bible.
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. John 13:34-35 (KJV)
Yup. He’s absolutely right, in one sense. Christians ought to have love one for another.
10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you. 12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul? 1 Corinthians 1:10-13 (KJV)
He’s right again. That verse is indeed in the Bible, and thus we ought to strive!
17 Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. 18 For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. 1 Corinthians 11:17-18 (KJV)
I want you to hold that last one in your mind. As lawyers will say, “subject to cross examination.”
Now, the contention of the no-doctrine adherents is that, “doctrine divides.” And as I wrote, the person did bring up what he considered 12 problems with doctrine. He asked will doctrine get you into heaven? That was a mistake, to not think that I could flip that argument, and did.
His point was this – Episcopalians have their version of doctrine. Presbyterians have theirs. Baptists have theirs. Methodists have theirs. Charismatics have theirs. Nobody can agree and it’s dividing the body of Christ. Doctrine divides. Throw away doctrine, because all it does is divide the body of Christ!
That’s why I say, misguided zeal. He did well to argue his point.
When you go public with your thoughts on a blog today, you’re risking embarrassment – because just about anyone can go on your blog and quickly employ fallacious logical arguments to try to make your argument look foolish. Some examples are Ad Hominem, reduction ad absurdo, the “no true scotsman” argument, appeal to authority, and many more. Henry Thouless wrote up a book on these, which makes for interesting reading. I consult in occasionally in writing this blog.
The gentleman did well to argue his point – he just did not see that he had half an argument. That’s why I call it misplaced zeal. If he’d constructed the ENTIRE argument in his head, then he’d most likely be arguing the Independent Fundamental Baptist argument.
What is “doctrine”?
Teaching. That which you have been taught. “Teachings divide! Get rid of teachings!”
That’s in essence what he’s arguing. It’s a valid point, up to a certain extent.
What I’ve been arguing is that there is only one right way, one right doctrine. If God teaches it, it’s right. And it takes a LOT of work to study the Bible, as you have to compare what the Bible says on its face with what it says… everywhere else it speaks on a topic!
A good tool for beginners is Nave’s Topical bible, or Torrey’s. Or both. I used both for quite a while, as I realized quickly that neither topical bible was complete on its own. And Nave was a denier of Hell. The concept that unbelievers in Christ would be tormented forever was distasteful to him. Good! It absolutely SHOULD be! That’s why you were given the Great Commission! However, Orville Nave decided he would rather disbelieve in Hell, and thus deliberately construct his entries in his topical Bible to attempt to refute it.
That’s a doctrinal error. Doctrinal errors divide. We should get rid of doctrinal errors.
OH!!!! That’s the complete argument.
See, I’m actually commending the guy I had the disagreement with. I think if he grasps this fact, it’s going to drastically change him.
Some denominations advocate Universalism. If you advocate that every man goes to heaven, your evangelism simply becomes “join this church! It’s great! we have sour cream and onion dip with potato chips during Sunday School class!”
I guess I shouldn’t write my blog when I’m hungry – I tend to talk about food a lot. My readers probably all have gained five pounds in the last year just reading me drool about food.
Advocating Universalism causes one to stop teaching, “ye must be born again.” And thus, almost the entire denomination will end up in the very place that Orville Nave found so offensive.
Some denominations advocate that you are predestined to be saved, and others predestined to Hell. That’s a doctrinal error. when you advocate that, you end up with this situation where – again – you end up not teaching “ye must be born again.” And thus, again, almost the entire denomination ends up in Hell.
Does doctrine divide? or false doctrine and doctrinal error divide?
Some denominations teach that Christ, God the Father and God the Holy Spirit are all one God revealed in One person, but in different Modes. That’s a heresy. It’s a denial of Christ. Again, almost that entire denomination will end up in Hell for all eternity. Think about this. That’s horrific. I’ve just listed three denominations that have doctrinal error in their teachings that will condemn a vast majority to Hell. In reality, it’s more than three, because there’s several denominations holding to each of the viewpoints.
It’s doctrinal error that’s the problem, not doctrine.
Other denominations advocate paedo-baptism, the sprinkling of infants, as a means of salvation. That’s a form of Baptismal Regeneration. That’s advocating salvation by works. A gross doctrinal error, that results in eternal damnation unless you repent. And again, that means that many in that denomination will not ever get born again, because well meaning people are telling them, “trust your baptism!”
Doctrinal error divides. doctrinal Error divides the body of Christ, and causes division. Get rid of doctrinal error.
Some churches, many of them IFB, Narrow is the way types, teach we go through a portion or all of the Rapture. The end result is a lot of backsliding, and lack of effectiveness for God, because the immanency of the Rapture is now dismissed. It’s a doctrinal error. Do any of those people go to Hell?
uh… no. They’re good. A little embarrassed when the Rapture does happen! But… that’s about it. Oh, and it cost them rewards.
Do I separate from them? No. Not unless they want to keep arguing with me about it, and I get tired of having to refute the same arguments over and over again. Then I’m going to say, “See ya!”
Regarding those n doctrinal error, the Bible tells us this:
17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. Romans 16:17-18 (KJV)
14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. Ephesians 4:14-16 (KJV)
See, the guy who disagreed with me – he’s got the love, I’ve got the doctrine. In many ways, he can learn from me – but I most assuredly can learn from him.
3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 1 Timothy 1:3 (KJV)
10 For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; 1 Timothy 1:10 (KJV)
1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; 1 Timothy 4:1 (KJV)
6 If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. 1 Timothy 4:6 (KJV)
13 Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. 1 Timothy 4:13 (KJV)
16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee. 1 Timothy 4:16 (KJV)
seriously, the Bible places a great deal of emphasis on doctrine. We need to “take heed unto the doctrine”. We need to keep it without spot. As David Cloud says all the time, “A spot is a little thing!” I actually have heard him say, “There’s a spot on my tie – can you see it? No? That’s because it’s a little thing. We need to keep our doctrine without SPOT.”
David Warner, of Faithful Baptist church in Omak Washington (soon relocating to Texas) actually says, “The Independent Fundamental, narrow is the way, king james only Baptists tend to have the doctrine down – but we do very poorly in the “love” area.”
So, more to teach myself than any of you, I’m going to write some stuff on Phile’o, brotherly love soon.
Boy, could I use a Dr. Pepper right now! I better get some breakfast soon.