Chameleon Church

13 07 2010

Increasingly I am self-doubting about writing general blogs, but sometimes things hit the headlines that just defy silence. I am after all a Christian and a church leader of a non-denominational church. This week that faithless institution, the Church of England Synod, have been at it again; this time over the subject of ordination of women as bishops. The analogy of rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic will not go away.

Now I am not commenting on the subject in question. I have my own views about it, views that I would say were rooted in Scriptural logic and not cultural excuses. But that is not why I am writing; there is actually a far bigger issue at stake here, to which this dying dinosaur seems completely impervious. Last night on TV news, the reporters had what seemed to be an ordinary member of the Synod expressing an opinion why women should be made bishops. I don’t have his exact words but essentially in his reasoning he was saying that the church mustn’t get too much out of step with modern culture.

So here we have it, the Church of England wants to be a chameleon church, a church that blends in with the norms of society. No wonder it is a dying wing of the Christian church, and thank goodness that there are other wings of the Church at large that are alive, well and thriving.

Here was a man representing the governing body of this one diminishing denomination showing that he actually had little or no knowledge of the roots of his faith and, indeed, appears to lack faith completely, which is why earlier I referred to them as a faithless institution.

Where does this man, and so many like him, get this idea that the role of the church is to conform to the norms of the world, to blend in with culture? It’s supposed to be the other way round! The history and teaching of the whole Bible and the New Testament in particular is quite clear, despite the confused ramblings of those who don’t read and study it. Faith, it says, is responding to what God has said, and that is at the heart of the entire Christian Faith. It is all about the basic and fundamental belief that God has spoken and our role is simply to respond to what He has said.

Now you may not believe that and you may not believe the Bible but if you don’t, please don’t go by the name of Christian! You can call yourself what you like, but don’t call yourself a Christian. And don’t stand up and represent what purports to be a Christian organisation, for all you do is make it appear even more foolish.

If the Church of England wants to take on the norms of the non-Christian, unbelieving world, what makes it any different from any secular organisation? Why should people go to it? Their answer must be because they provide an emotional religious experience on a Sunday, a superstitious crutch for the nervous.

If people go looking for truth, an alternative to the confused, materialistic, muddled, humanistic and atheistic ways of so much of life in the West today, from the expressions of the Synod at least, the Church of England is obviously not the place to find it.

When will the leaders of the major denominations speak out prophetically against the folly of modern society that largely disregards God, works on a basis of anything goes and if it feels right, do it. The fruits of this way of thinking are patently obvious in our crumbling societies in the West today. Yes, there are still many good things, but that is the grace of God who constantly works to counter the folly we have just spoken of.

When will these leaders say to newspaper editors and TV journalists and interviewers, stop pontificating from your non-believing standpoint as it you had some sort of authority to back you? You don’t! Be honest and say, “I don’t believe the Bible, I don’t believe in God and I don’t understand what the Bible is all about.” At least, world, have that sort of integrity, but don’t speak on spiritual issues as if you knew what you were saying – and that obviously applies to some members of the C of E Synod as well.

Perhaps when the Arch-Bishops have the courage to confront these basic issues of belief there might be a slight hope for the Church of England, but until then, unless God moves in revival, the future is pointing to a graveyard for them. What is tragic is that, within their ranks, are many incredibly good church leaders with strong Biblical understanding and strong faith, but where are they when it comes to speaking to the nation? When will they have the courage to say, enough is enough? The rest of us are watching and waiting.

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