Irresponsible Shepherds Bring Desolation
by Mark McIntyre
Ed Stetzer recently wrote an article regarding the decline of the United Methodists. This decline is not unique to that denomination, other “main-line” denominations share this experience.
These denominations have been in the news for abandonment of standards that held sway in Christendom for 2000 years. For example, The Presbyterian Church USA recently enacted rules that will open up ordination to homosexuals. As bad as this is, I would argue that this failure is a symptom of a larger problem.
The larger problem is the abandonment of Scripture as the authority upon which the Church should build its belief and practice. With the rejection of the inspiration of the original manuscripts, the church has lost her moral foundation. With the claim that Scripture is man-made comes the notion that Scriptural commands and principles can be set aside at will. This is done to the detriment of the church.
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The pastors and leaders in these denominations, and those who have trained them, must bear a majority of the responsibility for the decline. By rejecting Scripture, they have also rejected Jesus Christ, no matter that they still use his name. Those who reject Scripture are irresponsible shepherds who are not providing proper spiritual care to their flocks.
Yes, I am aware of the attempts to explain that the Bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality. In their attempts, these shepherds perform exegetical gymnastics to stretch words into meanings that the writers and original readers never would have understood. This ploy has been in play since the beginning and is a variation on the theme of “did God really say?” (Genesis 3:1-7)…
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