Things going so well here that a minister considering cultural apologetics as one of his areas of expertise left with nothing to do?
Marriage has gone back to being solely between a man and a woman?
Gays quietly keeping their proclivities to themselves as a result of good old fashioned shame?
The vast majority of children being born to married couples?
And those that aren't either adopted into loving families or at least raised by biological parents that love the children enough to maintain a facade in front of the child that they tolerate each other and can get along civilly?
Rap music shifted its lyrics now to extol a lifestyle of sober frugality and personal industry?
In detailing his missionary expedition to Africa, pastor and cultural apologist Voddie Baucham points out that he is not a theological renegade but is rather being sent from his local church to a local church.
Extrapolating from that logic, does that mean in our own contexts that the hands (or perhaps more importantly the tongue) of the average believer is tied unless church authorities allow you to evangelize?
From that presupposiition, it seems that it is illegitimate to conduct missions or evangelism as a form of God's work apart from the approval of one's church.
Baucham identifies himself as a part of the Reformed movement.
A fundamental perspective of that particular theological outlook constricts the separation between secular and sacred work to the point where that the division is nearly nonexistent.
Therefore, if all work is God's work, should the church have veto power regarding what profession the individual decides to pursue or if they go into business on the path of entrepreneurship?
If one is going out as a missionary in the name of a particular congregation, that is one thing and you should be answerable to their authority as an employee.
However, if you are conducting outreach under the terms of the general mandate where one is essentially admonished to make a nuisance of oneself by interjecting religion into the workplace and in passing conversations with the neighbors, on what grounds do you condemn if a believer decides to share the Gospel down the street or halfway around the world?
In this sermon justifying his self-imposed exile to Africa, Voddie Baucham criticized men that pursue seminary education in general and in particular those that use that education to find employment at another church without the approval or oversight of what would be categorized as the student's home church.
But is it really the place of the church to deny an individual's access to knowledge?
For that is a mindset characterizing Gnostic-oriented sects such as Mormonism and Freemasonry.
The Christian position is that knowledge should be available to anyone willing to pursue it.
Other than a character reference to assure that the applicant has not been caught with hands on little children, on other men's wives, or in the collection plate, should a single church have that much sway over your ecclesiastical career prospects or ministry opportunities?
By Frederick Meekins