Monday, October 30, 2006

Sand Theology

Jesus said in Matthew 7:24-27

24“Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25“And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. 26“Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27“The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.”

This pivotal passage at the end of the sermon on the mount demonstrates how Jesus spoke with authority. Jesus always highly prized his words. Note these passagses:
  • John 8:31 "abide in my words" truly disciples of mine ( love is not the only thing that determines one to be a disciple)
  • John 12:48 "rejects me and receives not my words" has a judge, the word I have spoken
  • Luke 9:26 whoever is "ashamed of Me and of My words," I will be ashamed
  • Matt. 24:35 my "words" will not pass away
  • John 6:63 the "words" I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.
  • John 8:47 “He who is of God hears the words of God"
  • John 10:24 “He who does not love Me does not keep My words"
  • John 15:7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."

Jesus made a distinction between a wise man who heard his words and acted upon them and the foolish man who heard his words and did not act upon them. I used to think that the difference was between action and inaction, but both the wise and the foolish did something--they both built houses.

If we were to look at those houses, they would appear similar in many respects. Both were likely comfortable. The one on sand wouldn't last, no matter how lovely or comfortable. It may have hand several conveniences, but it did not please God.

People often fool themselves into thinking that what pleases them also pleases God. Unless one builds on rock, however, by listening to and heeding the words of Jesus, one is destined for a "great fall."

When I have taught a person the gospel of Jesus, that one is to believe, repent, confess Christ, and obey the Lord in baptism, I have taught what Jesus taught. Jesus said, "He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved." (Mark 16:16)

Faith + repentance + confession of Christ + baptism (Immersion in water) --> salvation

Some are taught

repentance + faith alone --> salvation and baptism comes later

Others are taught

sprinkled as infant --> salvation and faith and repentance later

Most of the time people see the difference between the first circumstance and the latter two. They realize that the first is built on rock, and the others are not.

The same might be said for the teaching about music in worship.

I can read in Scripture about the need to sing, about congregations singing from the hearts, giving praise and adoration to God (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16; Heb. 13:15).

I cannot read anywhere in the New Testament where churches used instruments of music to praise God.

Now if the infant sprinkling and faith only doctrines are sand because they are not in the words of Jesus, why isn't adding the instrument also not sand?

think

Phil

2 comments:

Richard Mansel said...

You wrote,
"People often fool themselves into thinking that what pleases them also pleases God."

That is so very true. Thanks for the quote!

Scott said...

Thanks for another great article Phil. Keep up the good work.