I guess it’s time to respond to Steve’s comments to my CHRISTIAN AMERICA, PART 2 blog. It’s been a month.
Steve said (among other things), “I'm suggesting that we will get farther with the typical Am Christian by interacting with them on their turf, rather than challenging their cherished stories, like ‘our Christian forefathers.’ Of course, the same would apply to humanist scientists and their evolution myths.”
I disagree. While I believe we should be gentle with our fellow Christians, I do believe that untruths need to be challenged. “ … instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith” (1 Timothy 1:3, 4). “The Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth … “ (2 Timothy 2:24, 25).
For years I have kept silent while being subjected to myths fed to me by my fellow believers. All that this silence ever accomplished was for them to assume that I held to those same myths.
As far as “humanist scientists and their evolution myths,” while I believe they need challenging, I don’t find this to be as important as challenging the myths held by my fellow believers. The New Testament example is that of challenging false teaching within the church – among believers.
When Paul faced “secular” thinkers in his day, he did not give a rebuttal to their thinking. Rather, he used their myths as a bridge to the gospel. Read Acts 17:16-34, especially verse 23: “For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance this I proclaim to you.” But in the church Paul confronted false teaching with passion (Acts 15:1, 2; Galatians 2:5, 11, 14).
I believe we have for too long done the exact opposite of the New Testament examples and commands. We’ve pointed our finger at the sin and error outside the church and ignored the sin and error within the church.
As far as “certain stories where everyone in our group agrees on their meaning,” isn’t the biblical story (or narrative) enough? While we as Americans have other “stories,” our interpretation of those stories must be done in light of the biblical “story.”