Faith musings from the seat of a forklift.
Bay doors are quite important. Not only do we back trucks up to them for the sake of loading and unloading, but they are also a part of the physical security of the building. If the door is closed and locked, it is unlikely that anyone can get in through that door. However, bay doors are very much like garage doors in most homes. This means that they are on a track with rollers. However, if a roller is off track, especially if it’s a bottom corner like in the image above, it becomes a security hazard.
The same thing can happen in the church. Certainly I am not saying the church has rollers doors, though I have been to a couple that do. What I am saying is that if a church strays from the word of God, it can get off track in terms of doctrine and practice, creating an opening for accepting things that the Bible would otherwise call sin.
This idea of being off track is nothing new. In the church, there is another term we can use for saying somebody, or something, is off track. We would say that they have gone astray. We actually find this concept in Isaiah 52:6. The verse reads “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way”. Interestingly, this verse falls right in the middle of one of the great messianic prophecies of the Bible. Equally interesting is that the rest of the verse reads “and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all”. Yes, we have all gone astray, yet God sent us a savior to take the punishment for our sins.
Yes, we are all sinners. None of us is righteous, not one of us. In fact, by way of our sinful nature, every one of us is an enemy of God. We are dead in our sins. This is why the Apostle Paul wrote in Colossians 2:13 “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses”. Yes, Christ Jesus was put to death so that we might be raised up from the dead. We are baptized into Christ’s burial that we may be raised up with him. So it is, that we have perfect forgiveness of our sins on account of Christ Jesus.
There is a problem. Some churches don’t teach this. Instead, they teach other things for “itchy ears”. Some of these things seem reasonably harmless, and even Biblical, but to look at the verses that are used to support these ideas, and the context in which the verses occur, often reveal an interpretation not intended by scripture. Then there are church, and preachers, who teach things that are NOT found anywhere in the Bible. A good example of this is Joyce Meyers and Joel Osteen. Neither of these have a proper seminary degree (which is not absolutely necessary to be a preacher in some churches (though it should be), but is quite helpful), but they teach all sorts of things, and Joyce Meyers even admits that her teachings can’t be found in the Bible, rather they are being given to her even as she speaks. Joel Osteen simply picks the verses that he wants to twist to say what he wants to say. Both are heretics, yet millions still listen to them and send them money. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing and should be rightly shunned.
I am not going to go in-depth regarding false teachings. I have written of such things in other posts. I mention Osteen and Meyers just for the sake of reference. That they are among the worst of the heretics is somewhat debatable, though they are still heretics. Simple truth, what they teach is exactly why we need to stick to scripture and sound doctrine. Otherwise, it would be easier for people such as these to lead others astray. Sadly, as people are led astray, they find that their faith falls off track and it can become difficult to get on track again.
In the Lutheran church, all of our doctrine is contained in the Book of Concord. However, it is merely an exposition of what the Bible teaches. The Bible is the word of God, and the Book of Concord is merely how we understand the Bible. As long as we stay true to the Bible and the Book of Concord, it is quite difficult for our faith to get off track. Yes, we still struggle, like anyone else, but we also know where to turn when we are having problems, and I will include a link to the Book of Concord below.
Just as an off track roller on a bay door is a security risk, so too is a life that strays from the Bible. Only the Bible contains the word of God which can help us as we live our lives. Only the Bible gives us the security of knowing that our sins are forgiven in Christ Jesus. There is no other way.
Want to get back on track? Get to church, and read the Bible. Maybe even ask questions or consult the Book of Concord. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Get back on track and get away from all the false teachings that lead people astray. If you remain grounded in God’s word, and attend a Bible believing church regularly, you will be more secure in your faith.
A bay door with a roller off track, not secure. A bay door with the roller on track, secure. A life without the word of God, insecure. A life with the word of God, secure.