Friday, May 11, 2012

The Importance of Doctrinal Purity

How much time did Jesus spend teaching doctrines concerning religious rituals (aka worship)? He spent his time working on the heart of people concerning their morality, not their doctrinal purity. The epistles are the same way. Morality is stressed. Relationships among believers are stressed. Where there is doctrinal teaching it is most often to address problems among the members, stop infighting, get them to accept, love, and show concern for their brothers and sister. Or it is teaching against the doctrines of men that are being imposed.

Most of what we call the "pattern of worship" is taken from a few examples here and there, not direct commands. And just because a church did something that way once or twice does not mean that it must be done that way for all time.

James says that true religion is taking care of those in need and keeping ourselves pure from the corruption of the world. He is not talking about doctrinal purity. He is talking about morality and action and treating people right. How do I know? Because that's what he talked about in the rest of his letter.

Jesus mentioned 2 ways that the world will know we belong to him: 1) love each other, 2) obey his commandments. How many doctrinal commands did Jesus give? How many moral and relational commands did he give?
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