by Dr. Brad Black
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I just heard a Focus on the Family broadcast where Chuck Colson was the guest speaker. Something he said just broke my heart and I know it is true. He said most Christian sitting in the pews on Sunday do not even know what they believe. Chuck Colson was saying that in a Gallop poll of people claiming to be Christian only 9% could agree with and I quote.
“firm belief in six specific religious views. Those views were that Jesus Christ lived a sinless life; God is the all-powerful and all-knowing Creator of the universe and He stills rules it today; salvation is a gift from God and cannot be earned; Satan is real; a Christian has a responsibility to share their faith in Christ with other people; and the Bible is accurate in all of its teachings.”
This blows me away. I know that there were people in church who did not know what it took to become a Christian because we have Salvations almost weekly. But less than ten percent means most likely that of the 4 people sitting next to you church (front, back, and both sides) three of them do not know what it takes to be a Christian. I will make this very personal it means that only 13 people who read my blog believe in these “six specific religious views” This is a very sad state of our churches and convicts me that I am not making a difference with this blog.
This leads me to the Title of this blog Orthodoxy. As I have said before I went through several years of school and paid a lot of money to learn some of these word so I like to use them every once and a while it makes my wife happy that I did learn something with all the time and money. Orthodoxy simply means right thinking. Most of the people in our churches do not have the right thinking about what it means to be saved. Which then leads into another big word Orthopraxy which means practicing the right thing or doing the right things. You see that the “six specific religious views” would be called Orthodoxy views of the church and Orthopraxy actions for the church. This is Chuck Colson point was that if the so called Christians do not know what they believe and should do no wander they are not make a difference in the world.
In seminary we used to argue about Orthodoxy more as which church was right on communion, baptism etc. All the things that make us have so many dominations. To be quite honest with you stuff that really does not matter compared with the fact that our calling was the lead people to Christ and we are auguring over this stuff and not teaching the people the basics facts of the gospel. When I was listen to this broadcast I was quiet convicted.
When I was a young youth pastor I had a group of teenager ask me to come up with Christianity for dummies. (those books were real big back then) I came up with five things that I had them all memorize.
1 That Jesus Christ died on the cross for you sins
2 That Jesus Christ rose on the third day
1 Corinthians 15:3-4 (King James Version)
3For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
This is the gospel in a nut shell by St. Paul. Paul says that he gave them the “first of all” the very first thing. An he had also received the same thing. In other words he gave them the very first thing that he also received the gospel. A belief in these with your whole heart is what makes you a Christian. This is the Orthodoxy that we all must have to be a Christian.
The next three points were more Orthopraxy.
3 obey the word of God
1 Samuel 12:14
If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the LORD your God:
4 worship God
Hebrews 10:24-25 (King James Version)
24And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
25Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
5 tell others about Jesus
Matthew 28:19-20 (New King James Version)
19 Go therefore[a] and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.[b]
These three are broad I know but the idea was that after they became Christians that they need to read the Bibles and join a Bible study so they could learn how to do these things. My job description from the Bible is to teach them.
Ephesians 4:11-12 (King James Version)
11And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
This is the whole point we need to get back to basic we need to learn right belief Orthodoxy and then take this and use it in our everyday life Orthopraxy and change the world. We are not doing this and we as Christians must do this.
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