Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Traditionally Speaking-724/2012

"So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught, whether by word of mouth or by letter from us." 2 Thess 2:15

"Tradition" can be a dirty word in the church today. As we contend with one another about the way things ought to be done, the word "tradition" comes up all of the time. The argument is about what the bible says vs. what we have fallen into the habit of doing. There are times that we have done something a certain way for so long that it rises, in the mind of some, to the level of scriptural authority. In fact, a visitor who was looking for a new church home recently told me that he could not continue to worship with us because we have a separate children's worship service and that this was against what the bible says. Of course the bible doesn't address this topic or anything like it anywhere, but because this brother was unaccustomed to such a practice, it put us on the outside of what he thought was right. It put us outside of tradition.

Beloved, the only tradition that matters is that of the apostle's teaching. The bible is clear in its central and fundamental messaging. We must hold to the gospel tradition that involves the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord and savior, Jesus. We must love God with all of our hearts, souls and minds and we must love others as ourselves. Naturally, this list could be considerably lengthened, but everything on that list would come back to these three statements. So the message does not change but the methodology does. The scriptures were written thousands of years ago when there was no internet, automobile, printing press, cameras, church buildings, PA systems and the like, yet we use these things to advance the message.

Let us be sure that we do not invalidate the word of God by human tradition which establish and hand down; for we often do many things such as that, Mark 7:13.

Rejoicing in the Lord,


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