What Is A Christian?  

Posted by Ben in , ,

Over the past year i have spent incredible amounts of time surfing the blogosphere and commenting on other peoples' blogs. It all started with my Theology professor's mention of the Emerging Church movement (conversation). I wanted to know what this was, meanwhile my roomate was reading "Everything Must Change" by Brian McLaren who seems to be the Guru of this conversation. I began doing a bunch of research as well as online checking around. I found a few sites which i really urge other Christians to avoid and there are many reasons why, but this is an email i wrote the director of one of the websites. He used a quote from someone which said that a Christian is defined by what one believes, not by who they love. I couldn't possibly disagree with any statement more. We are a Christian because we LOVE God and have a relationship with Him through his Son Jesus Christ, and we come to an understanding of how this is and what He has done either before or after our encounter and relationship with Him, but the relationship is what makes us Christian. So i wrote this email. Weigh in on this with your thoughts.


Ken,

So, i have done some more reading on your articles. I came across this quote in your article on Mark Ostreicher.

As Mike Gendron of Proclaiming the Gospel Ministry has correctly said, “A Christian is defined by what he believes and not by who he loves.”

You use Scripture to support your claims throughout your articles, though as i study the Scriptures as a Ministry major, i find that a lot of your Scripture uses are done without any proper exegesis. So, here is my Scripture to show you how INCORRECT Mr. Gendron's statement (and your endorsement of it) really is.

John 13:35, ESV - "By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." (the words of Jesus)

Matthew 24:35, ESV - "For i was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me." (I am pretty sure that this was Jesus telling people how they will inherit the Kingdom and it sure sounds like he required us to LOVE people, it does not sound like he's going to ask us for our good ole biblical theology)

Matthew 22:37 - 39, ESV - And he said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commanment. And the second is like it: you shall love your neighbor as yourself."

1Cor 13:2, ESV And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

1Cor 13:13, ESV So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Matthew 7:22-23, ESV On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.' It seems to me, sir, that the only two pictures Jesus gives of "that day" (judgement), speak of whom we loved, not what we believed or knew.

You must understand that a statement like this one lays theological rocks for what one might say about other people, and greatly calls into question most of what you say. Again I ask you, even if these men are heretics, can we not learn how to love like He loved from them? Can we not be humble and learn a fuller picture of the Kingdom? Again, let me say this again... You are a Christian because of whom you love, that is ALL. Now if you love Jesus Christ, If you love YHWH, then you will accept His Holy SPirit, and you will believe what is true and right, at least the basics. So one more time, We are Christians because we love HIM and because we love OTHERS, this is in fact the greatest commandment from the mouth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Shalom,

Ben

This entry was posted on Wednesday, April 16, 2008 at 4:15 PM and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

1 comments

Proud of you brother! It's always neat to hear you talk at home about all of this - I am glad that I can now still "hear" you...even from IL to VA.

Love you!

April 17, 2008 at 9:09 AM

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