Every local church exists in a culture, a time, and a place, and the first two are always changing. If a church isn’t flexible on non-biblical essentials, it will be existing in (and seeking to reach) a culture that no longer exists, in a time which has passed
A church needs to be inflexible on what the Bible says, and flexible on everything else—all for the glory of God
‘Ideal’ churches will end up looking very different. But they will constantly be going through the same process—asking themselves difficult questions, thinking innovatively and radically, looking around not backwards, sacrificially giving up comfort or personal preference so “that by all means [they] might save some” (1 Cor 9:19-23, especially v. 22).
Again, this means you don’t fix ministry relationships first horizontally; you fix them vertically. Only when we have confessed our lack of love for God—his plan, his purpose, and his call—and only when we admit that we have replaced his agenda for us with our selfish agenda will we then be free to love one another in the way that his grace makes possible.
So, Diane, it’s not about sex, or pears, or money, or glamour, or happiness—it’s about God. I, a man, want to be God. He, in his righteous jealousy, will not allow it. But in his gracious love, God became a man to rescue me from myself
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