Monday, April 12, 2010

Before you point your gun at me

I have asked questions about pulpits, but before I state my mind, let me say that based on what I have encountered so far, most Christians have somewhat lost their hold on the traditions of Christian practice and religion. But at this very mention of "traditions" and "religion", I believe snipers are now getting prepped up, ready to assassinate my thoughts. So let me first explain where I am coming from before you point your gun at me.

I am a person who likes to delve in history, but I am quite ignorant about it since I was never taught history when I was at school. Don't ask me why, I have no idea - sadly, it just wasn't a subject. History fascinates me now. We are a people bound by time and as such, we are a people of history, whether we like it or not. The word of God as given to us in Scriptures is locked in time, in history. The letters, the songs, the laws and commandments, the accounts, the narratives are all in relation to the milieu of the people and events at their time.

Since God gave us His Scriptures in this manner, tied to time, he has to stop somewhere. And so God in His all-knowing Self gave us His word right up to John's writings in Revelation. But obviously history did not stop. God's work did not stop. So whatever happens after Revelation is to be set in place in relation to the whole counsel of what He has already given us in His word. And this resulted in the accepted practices, traditions, disciplines, in line with Scripture.

These practices, traditions and disciplines can change through time to be replaced by new practices, disciplines and traditions. No doubt about that, but my question is, if these old practices, disciplines and traditions are still usable and still coincides with the whole counsel of Scripture, why do away with it? They have gone through the test of time, the blood and sweat of the Early Church Fathers, the arguments and discourses of the scholars through the centuries, and some of them still in use till today. So why do away with them now in the name of convenience and the novelty of newer things.

My take is that in these times of technology, development and the glorification of short-cuts, we have lost our hold on history and the good that it brought us. We do not find time to think and find out why certain things are done the way they were done. Have we ever asked that if we made any changes to the Christian traditions and practices, what will be the long terms effects it will have on our lives, and the lives of our children? If we put a halt to our Christian traditions, will our children know and appreciate the wealth of Christian practices that came about through the centuries, that came about with much thought, discourse and intention? We have stopped thinking about how these time tested practices and traditions can still be beautiful in our lives. We have replaced them with the modern paraphernalia of objects, new half-baked ideas and loosely thought up ways of doing things.

I want to talk about my thoughts on pulpits in churches. But before I do that, I just want to gripe a little. Till my next available time slot to pen down my thoughts.


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