Last week, after the horrific movie shootings, the two presidential candidates suspended their attacks on each other and gave us a breather from political campaigning. It was a nice relief even though we all know this will not continue.
And I wondered, what would happen if the church took their lead and stopped its in-fighting and disagreements over doctrinal issues that are not essential to our faith?
For example, what does it matter where one stands on when Christ will return? The point is, He will return. Or why get all worked up if creation was a literal 7 days or some other time frame we really don’t understand. The point is God created the heavens and the earth. It’s fine to study these issues, have opinions and friendly discussions regarding your interpretation of biblical passages, but to make them issues of division, makes no sense.
There is a bigger issue to consider.
According to a recent Pew Survey reported on in June of this year, millenials (age 18-30) are the least religiously observant youths we’ve seen in a long time.
Why? Three reasons were cited: 1) Prayer has been taken out of schools 2) The impact of the modern use of the concept of the separation of church and state 3) Little knowledge of God’s word, a sort of spiritual anorexia.
People need to see the relevance of faith to everyday living. Faith needs to be valuable and essential to living.
Fighting about non-essential issues of doctrine doesn’t help people connect with their faith. It also doesn’t make the church attractive to those who may be interested in exploring faith.
We all have enough conflict in other parts of life to add church to the mix. Let’s not have the church be a source of more conflict, but a place we find peace, relevance and healing.