– PARTS OF A BOAT-
(if you have not read them, then reading part 1 and 2 will be helpful to follow the thoughts)
Not all the parts on my boat were essential, the boat could sail and get to where it going if it was missing a velvet couch, and maybe if I didn’t put the stickers on to distinguish between the guys and girls bathroom (although it make for some weird situations)
Take for example the piece of our boat called ‘baptism’. Some think we can baptism babies, and others think we can’t. I think if we all went honestly to the Scriptures and wrestled it out together we would come out with the same conclusion, but at the moment there are more important pieces to be sure about, so instead of fighting about that specific piece I link arms with someone who might not understand it like I do and fight to get the doctrine of the trinity on our boat.
Some guys make a piece that’s not important become important though… imagine if on a bot a guy put ‘no-entry signs’ with a toxic symbol over all the bathroom doors! That could cause all sorts of major problems and in the end even cause sicknesses and all crazy things on the ship… I’ll leave it to your imagination. That would be like people who say baptism is essential for salvation, they do not build the ship according to the manual, but their mistake in construction will jeopardize the whole voyage
Paul wrote to Titus and said one of the most amazing things about the connection with doctrine and living a righteous life… he said, “…showing all good faith, so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.” Paul was writing to slaves and telling them to be obedient and not to steal, before that he spoke to young men, young women, older men and older women, telling the Christians of all walks of life to live is such a way that adorns the Doctrine of God our Savior.
I think that’s so beautiful, its like how a husband would not look at other women and always speak highly of his wife, loving her by his actions all the time, and so he adorns the truth of the vows and marriage he is a part of.
The truth that he is married is important, its vital, if he wasn’t but was living like he was married that would be fornication. But if one has the truth as a ‘thing’ its made beautiful by the actions.
Paul when he was teaching Timothy showed the importance of doctrine, he said that Timothy should watch his life (the way he lives) and his doctrine closely, and by doing that he would save himself and those that heard him teach. (1 Tim 4:16)
Wow! The lights come on… Timothy, make sure you follow the instructions in that boat, that why lives will be saved. Paul could have said, “Timothy, the instructions are important, but the boat is a whole lot more then just a set of instructions, the boat is big and glorious and magnificent!” People die on big magnificent things…
But then comes the question…. And questions are vital….. What is the essentials? What pieces does our boat really need?
I may have opinions, you may have opinions, but what did God say?
Paul wrote down God’s out-breathed words and said, “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. ( 1 Cor 15:3-7)
Some people say that it doesn’t really matter if Jesus rose or not, some ‘christians’ say that they could continue to be a Christian if this were not true, if Jesus didn’t historically rise. Well.. Paul said, “And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins (1 Cor 15:17).
From those verses I see some stuff of first importance, do you?
It seems like Christ dying for our sins is rather important as well as His rising.
Because, he explains, both of those have to do with our salvation, that is, with how man is made right with God
So when someone says, you have to be baptized to be saved…. That’s adding a wrong piece to the boat, that’s going to cause people to suffer and never make it possibly
When someone says that you can get your sins forgiven by saying a prayer, or by eating a piece of bread, or doing good things, that’s not Christ dying for our sins. That’s taking things from other parts of the baot and putting it where its not supposed to be.
We can pray to communicate with our heavenly father whom we love and fear
We can eat bread in remembrance of Christ at communion
We can do good things because that’s why God made us His children, to do good works (Eph 2:10)
But if we take those things and put them where they don’t belong, we can make a very dangerous ship, on that can even make shipwreck of peoples faith (1 Tim 1:19)
In history a man named Martin Luther was on a really messed up ship, but he got hold of a manual and saw how wonderful it was meant to be! He tried to get the people who ran the ship to put the right pieces in the right place, but they wouldn’t. They didn’t understand the things of the Spirit and so they treated Luther like Jesus was treated, the rejected him and even tried to kill him.
This was called the reformation, it wasn’t a time of coming up with new pieces for the ship, it was a discovery that things when they are put in their right place, when the doctrines are understood correctly, leads to having a cruise the way Jesus intended it, the way God revealed it, the most glorious and life giving exciting way. Many people, called ;’reformers’ saw how beautiful this was saw how things were meant to be, and they were so amazed at the beauty of how God revealed Himself in His word that many many many of them died painful deaths, trying to show a so called ‘church’ how the boat was supposed to look.
I’m trying to convey a message to you through these blogs, but I’m limited, my vocabulary, the length of the blogs, my background, but there is a good chance that this blog will not convey all that I intend for you to know. Let me ask you a question:
Do you think God is limited by all of the things that limit me and you?