Saturday, February 25, 2006

DOCTRINE: For "Workmen" who don't want to be ashamed!

LOWERING THE BAR! [Ephesians 4:11-16]

Someone told me of a small high desert community which organized a marching band. They got high marks for spirit and good intentions, but not for music.

You see, in a town where the high school’s senior class is usually less than a couple of dozen, it’s difficult to find anyone to play an instrument, let alone play one well. They didn’t audition and interview potential members; they bribed, cajoled and promised, accepting any who came forward. The fact is they lowered their standards till every instrument had a player. But their performances? Horrible!

Most of us understand when standards are lowered in a situation like the above but what if a professional orchestra were to do this? An orchestra is organized to combine unique independent musical elements into a harmonious and melodious whole, there’s no room for degradation of standards.

A church is a lot like a symphonic orchestra, though far more consequential. A church is also like a small town, there seems always to be a dearth of people for their labor pool. Most small churches would get “high marks for spirit and good intentions,” but not for impressiveness.

Small churches can’t afford to cajole and manipulate just to increases in membership; taking any and all who come. Small churches must resist the temptation to degrade quality for quantity. Churches are intended to be organized to combine independent “natural” giftedness into a “supernatural” harmonious union: there really isn't room for degradation of standards.

Far too many churches have been willing to lower standards regarding membership, even those concerning office holders. If we can imagine the ruin degraded standards would bring upon a professional orchestra, why do we have so much trouble seeing the dangers of degrading biblical standards for The Body of Christ?

One reading of the New Testament is enough to impress the reader of the importance of overcoming and perseverance … I suggest we revisit those passages and stop becoming entangled with the world just to increase Body fat! (added 2/25/06)

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