Tag Archive | how-not-to

3 Ways NOT To Handle Theology

theology

: the study of religious faith, practice, and experience; especially : the study of God and of God’s relation to the world

It is one of those topics that makes many people uncomfortable. Like politics, theology is, by nature, divisive; most of the time there is no middle ground and it forces people to choose sides. Ironically, it often brings out the worst in people.

Still, I believe theology is necessary. In fact, I believe it’s unavoidable. Each of us has an opinion on God, or is in the process of forming one based on study or experience.
In light of that, here are 3 ways not to use theology. There are many more, but let’s start here.

1. Theology as a weapon

I’m right. You’re wrong. Nana-nana-boo-boo! is cute in the mouth of a child, but when it comes from an adult, a supposed “mature” follower of Christ, it’s devastating, especially with the thought of Heaven and Hell looming in the distance.

Regardless of your seminary training or lack thereof, your take on eschatology, or whether you’re a Presbyterian, a Complementarian, or a hardcore Vegetarian, if your message is wrapped in pride it will be ineffective. Even worse, it will be repulsive.

Quoting scripture to prove points and establish belief is great.I recommend memorizing this one first:

Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. (Ephesians 4:15 NLT)

At some point, biblical truth has to flow from the mind (knowledge) to the heart (love for others) and out through the hands and feet (service and generosity). Read More…

How Not To Handle Politics

I seldom wax political, but in light of the impending election, and the gross amount of vitriol dripping from the social media machine, I have decided to toss my hat in the ring and offer a simple How-Not-To list. A penny for your thoughts…

1. Make politicians into 2D caricatures of themselves.

These days, we rely on soundbites and smear campaigns to inform our decisions. This reduces candidates to cardboard cutouts on which we pin medals or throw darts. We strip them of all humanity and nuance, but people are more complex than that. We know this of ourselves. We hate to be painted with broad brush strokes, but that is exactly what we do to politicians.

Spend a little time with fact checking. Research voting histories and career track records, and avoid placing blind trust in the mainstream media. If your assumptions are confirmed, vote accordingly, but don’t cast your ballot based on the emotional appeal of a thirty second commercial.

2. Satan or Savior

He’s either the savior of the world or the devil in flesh… My vote will decide! – Jonathan Martin (on voting logic)

Looking at the Internet, it is hard to locate middle ground. The candidate is either the hope of the world or its ultimate destroyer.

For some, Obama is the love child of Oprah and Captain Planet—Clean air for everybody! And you get a car, and you get a car. For others, he is a closet Muslim Socialist working on a plan to provide every female citizen with an in-home abortion kit.

Read More…

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