The Logic of Rejecting Mainstream Churches
For all my religious blather, I don’t attend any regular church. We host worship in our home. I don’t like the isolation, but I don’t see any realistic alternative. Besides, the churches won’t let me stay around very long, once they find out what I believe. I’ve given up trying, until I run across one which knows and invites me anyway. Meanwhile…
1. So long as any religious organization is founded on Western intellectual assumptions, they cannot possibly read Scripture aright. The Bible is a Hebrew document, written entirely from Hebrew intellectual assumptions. (This is not the same as Jewish or Judaism.) They don’t have to get the same answers I do, but they can’t insist on traditional Western answers, either.
2. Because of this very faulty worldview applied to Scripture, most churches do not understand what defines a Christian, much less what constitutes a church. Virtually everything modern Western churches do misses the point. Overtly liberal Western churches aren’t Christian by any standard, except something in their wild imaginations and perhaps a historical legacy of having once held a genuine interest in following Christ. Progressives assume the whole thing is sentiment and emotional comfort, and deny the entire spiritual plane. Evangelicals and Conservatives are simply variations on the new Pharisaism. They embrace the errors of Judaism (see link above) — a predominance of literalism, and a confusion of the Two Realms.
3. A major element in confusion is the spiritual status of individuals. Scripture makes it painfully obvious you cannot know the spiritual status of any other person, but people whose spirits are alive can know it for themselves. Spiritual birth in others can be guessed via two primary features: (1) a sensitivity to the demands of God’s Word and (2) the reflexive fondness for other Christians (however expressed). Without those two, I am not required to regard anyone as a fellow Christian.
However, the most obvious frame of reference is penitence. The gospel call is to repent. We repent from sins as indicated by the Laws of God, as taught by Jesus. We understand Him best from the ancient Hebrew mindset. People who repent, even if only in their sentiments, are to be encouraged and helped along the path. That many people do manage to repent and change their lives by God’s power says more about God than the effectiveness of any church or religious organization.
Nothing else really matters.
Until I see a church which resembles or strives toward the clan structure of the New Testament churches, and makes a point of embracing the ancient Hebrew teachings, it’s not really a church.