Questioning something that people have believed like, forever, can be hard. However, sometimes a man can feel so strongly about the sanctity of truth that he has no option but to do so. While ever this is merely a theoretical exercise, people seem happy to accept and ignore the fact you believe something that might be different to them, or to the church you attend. When you act on the basis of that belief, suddenly the world goes crazy. You actually believe what you said you believe? Crazy talk!
I know a story of a man who did that. On a scale that I find it hard to comprehend. In a time when there was one spiritual Christian authority in the Roman Catholic church who held not only the belief that they were the only authority on truth, but had linguistically locked up the only means by which you might be able to test that, he stood up and said "Your doctrine on salvation is wrong", challenging the authority of the papal structure of the time. I don't know how modern-day Catholics feel about Martin Luther and the Reformation, but it seems to me it would be a fairly big deal even today. Even if they acknowledged corruption in the church at the time, they'd have to think that on at least some level Martin Luther had it wrong, I would think. I could be wrong. But for me as a member of a church that formed from the linage of the Protestant movement, what he did directly relates to the way I live out my faith today. Truth, it would seem, is a big deal.
It seems almost blasphemous to compare my trivial matter to this. I believe something my church does not. In the context of my church as an institution, it's a ripple in a pond. If they tomorrow were to accept what I thought, it would not destroy the underpinnings of Baptist..ism. If they don't agree (right or wrong), it doesn't mean they're walking in some great fallacy that will cause millions to miss something vital to salvation. But for me, I see it as true which makes it a big deal to me. And my church are not happy for me to believe that, at least if I'm actually going to believe it. I cannot lead people in any capacity if I'm going to lead them while holding this belief. For my church, that's not an acceptable situation, and I can appreciate that. At the same time, I'm being ostracised for thinking for myself. So far, I have had my loyalty, honour, commitment, and motives questioned. I expect more.
BUT (and it's a bold, capitalised one), I'm not so proud as to believe I couldn't be wrong. I could be. It has happened before, and this is why I haven't explained the what and why of all of this. To do so publicly and then find out I was wrong would be devastating for me, as it may mean other people would start to think the same because of me.
What I did want to say was this:
I'm genuinely seeking truth from the Bible about what God actually says to His people. This morning, I sat and prayed for divine leading, and then read Matthew 1 through 3. Tomorrow I'll do the same and start at Matthew 4 and read from there. When I get to the end of Revelation, I'm going to go back to Genesis and read from there. This to me seems the best way to approach this. I'm asking God to show me. Asking that if I've got it wrong, He will point me at what is right. Surely, surely where you're asking questions about something you've been taught, to go back to simply the word of God is the best, if not only way to find what is actually true.
STATIC DISCLAIMER: All the stuff in here is purely my opinions, and they tend to change depending on what mood I'm in. If you're going to get bitter if I say something about you that you don't like, then maybe don't read. I avoid using names as much as possible, and would request that people who know me do the same in their comments. Basically, I often vent my frustrations on here, so if you happen to be someone who frustrates me, expect to read a description of someone very much like you in here!