Today we live in a generation of contradictions where social media instead of making us social is isolating and consuming our time. The majority of believers do not study the Word and the majority would believe everything that is preached without having any deeper understanding.
The quality of McDonald’s and the appeal has nothing to do with the ingredients but that it is fast and tasty. We can do this theologically too.
I have been persuaded through the Great streams of mega Churches where the circuits and countries where they proliferate is that they package their theology and teaching to meet the fast instant lives which the people live at.
If they have a problem it has to be solved through an instant name it and claim it based message.
To know the Word we must study it in its entirety. Take time and learn the principles of scholarship in the Word. Some principles in scholarship
1. Context: The most important in studying the Bible is not just taking one verse out of a chapter and basing theology or principles on one verse. We must see the whole chapter and book to see what it is in context.
2. Historical Setting; we must know to who the verse is speaking to, what century and what the political and spiritual condition of God’s covenantal subjects. That way we understand how God opens our understanding to what God sees about the age presented.
3. Political sovereign situation; the Bible covers the trajectory of Abraham down to a family becoming a nation and that nation becoming the Church through Christ. We see how they were enslaved by Egypt, attacked by the enemies when they were in Canaan. We see Yeshua revealed in a time of Roman occupation. This gives us insight into how God deals with man in contrary circumstances.
4. Prophetic ; the Word has a personal application for each person as the Holy Spirit brings to mind a particular scripture and how it applies. Also opens our understanding to heavenly realities and principles.
These are just a few principles of study which does not condition our faith and make us simply study for academic aims.
So not all purposes and ways of God’s working with men is not so linear and neat as we would like.
As we operate in the arena of Church we would like to promote success and wealth and even preach on how to reach these. However almost all men and women in the Bible passed through years of obscurity and failure. Success comes in the measure of obedience, and success is fulfilling God’s purpose in any given place and time.
One example is Abraham. He never prophesied nor did anything we would recognise as being ministerial yet he is called a prophet by God and the father of our faith.
So in our pursuit of a more deeper meaningful expression of Church we must avoid trying to be formula and neat theology based. Our depth of knowing the Bible will reflect on what type of Church we will be.