I am asking myself this question today, "Is the Bible really vital
to our understanding of what it means to be a "Christ - follower?"
I am fairly certain that if I polled those that claim to be Christians in my "circle" of friends, they would all say with quite the level of enthusiasm, "YES!" Of course a question like that, and the answer that most would provide would also more than likely lead to other questions and perhaps a variety of answers. Some of the answers may even reveal opposing viewpoints.
You may wonder how this fits in to my "waiting - on - my - dreams - and - visions - to - be - revealed" theme that I started in my last post. Simply, I am looking forward to the day when the American church looks more like the church that has been painted first as a prophetic image, (a forward looking shadowy model, type, or archetype that has been) provided in the Old Testament but revealed in all its beauty in the New Testament. The Church of God revealed in Scripture is a masterpiece. The church revealed in post - modern American culture is a caricature - nearly unrecognizable if one holds it up against what is revealed in Scripture...
Having said that, I am looking for the day when we see such things as -
- a lot of people being born again as opposed to merely assimilating into the life of a local congregation. (Assimilation is nothing more than a buzz word that says to a person, "Come and be part of our programs, give money and time to support various causes, and begin to look and act like we do.") Rarely in today's church do we hear talk of sin, it's root, it's fruit, and it's remedy.
- persons connecting with and fleshing out (literally) the commands of Jesus particularly those that are necessary to undertake HIS mission.
- a ravenous hunger to read, study, and practically apply the Scriptures. (And, for the church to view the Bible as the very words of God.)
- the church, in love and passionate persistence, reeking havoc in satan's domain by winning those trapped in and shredded by false religion to a biblical love for and trust in the Jesus of the Bible!
- widespread and physical healing by Divine power.
- the spirit of anti - christ overwhelmed by THE Spirit of Christ working in and through the Church of God.
- men, especially young men willing to pay any price, go anywhere, do anything, to go on the offensive and storm the gates of hell for the express purpose of taking back prisoners of war imprisoned by the devil's lies.
- the church lifting up true praise and worship to God in, by, and through lives lived in praise: the praise which is revealed in Scripture. (This true worship and praise has little and often nothing to do with the foolishness that goes on in most churches in corporate settings.)
These are some of my hopes and dreams...