Disclaimer: About This Blog

THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Chain Blog: Please Agree With Me


I just had to join this chain blog.

Please you must agree with me.

If you are a follower of Jesus you must agree that unity is essential. (click link for some verses you must agree with).

You must agree that love is essential. (click link for some verses you must agree with).

There are a bunch of other things I'm sure we agree on. (See Clarification post: What is essential?)

And I'm sure there are a bunch of topics I'm sure we disagree about.

I agree that you will disagree with me on lots of stuff. But please agree with me that love and unity are essentials to following Jesus.

Before we start our next debate, let's pause first and recognize that we share a bond of unity, based on God's love for us. God's presence in our lives is made visible by the love we have for God and each other... even when we disagree about some other stuff.Are factions/divisions/denominations/labels building up or tearing apart Christ's church?

Have we elevated some issues that could be non-essentials to a point higher than our call to unity and love?

Have we emphasized agreement to our understanding of complex truths more than emphasizing the simple truths of love and unity?


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Hopefully, those questions will inspire someone to write the next post in this chain blog.

So, how does it work?

First, feel free to comment on this post as normal. You can leave any comment that you’d like.

However, if you want to write the next post in this chain blog (that is, the next “link” in the “chain” of posts), then be the first to leave a comment on this post saying that you want to write the next post. (If someone else has already claimed the next post, then simply wait to comment on that next post and say that you want to write the one following that. Okay?)

Then, the person who asks to write the next “link” in the “chain” should write a post in the next few days and leave a comment here with a link when that post has been published.

While comments and discussion can continue on this post, the chain will then jump to that next post and we will continue as I explained above. Hopefully, it will become clearer as we move forward.

If you write a post for the chain blog, you can title your post whatever you wan to call it. I simply ask that you include the rules of the chain blog (below) and a list of all the previous “links” in the chain blog.

So, here are rules in a format that is easy to copy and include in your posts:

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Chain blog rules:


1) If you would like to write the next blog post (link) in this chain, leave a comment stating that you would like to do so. If someone else has already requested to write the next link, then please wait for that blog post and leave a comment there requesting to write the following link.

2) Feel free to leave comments here and discuss items in this blog post without taking part in the actual “chain”. Your comments and discussion are very important in this chain blog.

3) When you write a link in this chain, please reply in the comments of the previous post to let everyone know that your link is ready. Also, please try to keep an updated list of links in the chain at the bottom of your post, and please include these rules at the bottom of your post.

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“Links” in this chain blog:

1. “Chain Blog: Dealing with Divisive Issues Introduction” by Alan
2. “Chain Blog: Dealing with divisive issues starts with love” by Arthur
3. “I am divisive” by Jeremy
4. “Chain Blog: Please agree with me” by Jon
5. “Division and our shared humanity” by Andy
6. “Chain Blog: solving the problem” by Bobby
7. “Divisiveness: Acts 2 & Ugly Carpet” by fallenpastor
8. “Stimulating our Collective Memory” by Trista
9. “No, we can’t just get along” by Alan
10. "Who says we are divided?" by Jon

7 comments:

Alan Knox said...

Jon,

You bring up some very good points and equally good questions. For me, when it comes to dealing with divisiveness, the image attached to the top of this post is critical. If we are seeking unity based on anything or anyone besides Jesus Christ, we will probably find it. But, it will not be the kind of unity we need, and we will keep splintering from others who are in Christ.

-Alan

Jonathan said...

OK. My wife has given me some feedback so I want to clarify. Maybe I should write a 6th post, but that may not be allowed. :)

I'm sorry if my post came across to simplistic. As if the only thing we need to agree on is love and unity. That is not what I believe. There are many things all Christ followers do agree on. And many things we disagree about.

If I were to re-write or re-post I would ask:

What is essential to being a Christ follower?

How about some of theses (in no particular order):
1) Agree that Jesus is Lord
2) Agree that Jesus is God
3) Agree that Jesus saves
4) Live a life full of God's Love
5) Live in unity with God's family


Or these easy ones:
6) Agree that Luke wrote Acts
7) Agree that Adam was a man
8) Agree that Noah built an Ark

Or these:
9) Agree that God loves sinners
10) Agree that God will torture sinners for eternity in a conscious state.
11) Agree that believers should attend a weekly service under the leadership of an ordained minister.
12) Agree that TULIP sums up the gospel.
13) Agree that NT believers should give a tithe to a local church.
14) Agree that infants should be baptised
15) Agree that we should never pray to saints
16) Agree that salvation is by faith alone
17) Agree that Christians should never smoke, drink or dance or hang out with those who do.
18) Agree that KJV is the best translation
19) The gospel that we should be preaching is the gospel of the kingdom that Jesus and His disciples preached

...

How can we determine what is an essentials?

I suspect the ones that are simple, the ones that have massive Scriptural support, are likely the ones that are essential.

What else have I missed?

Jeremy Myers said...

I really like your point about God's presence in our lives being made visible by our love.

so often we think we can tell someone we love them, without actually showing it. But it doesn't work that way.

I like your comment too. We all agree that we should agree on the essentials, but few agree on what the essential are, or even how to figure out what they are! This would make a great blog post.

Andy Witt said...

Jon,
Thanks for this post! I don't think it was too simplistic, but thanks for the additional comments!

I created the next link in the chain, which I think helps ground there previous links in some Old Testament passages as well. Let me know what you guys think!

Here's the link:
http://www.andywittonline.com/?p=872

The post is called, "Division and our Shared Humanity"

Jonathan said...

Thanks Alan for starting this chain, and the encouraging feedback.

Jeremy, I took your advice and made my clarification comment into a new post. Hope it doesn't mess with the flow of the chain... Can a chain have a branch?

Thanks.

Jeremy Myers said...

I like branches. I just usually end up sawing myself off them.

Alan Knox said...

I've published the 9th link post in the chain blog here: "No, we can't just get along."

-Alan