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 Desert Island Theology

(I read the thread on miracles ceasing and thought I would post this short blog I wrote)


I think Christianity, to a great degree, could be revolutionized if believers had what I term “Desert Island Theology. What do I mean by “Desert Island Theology”? What I’m not talking about is a theology that is learned at a bible school, through Christian radio, through dead saints from past era’s, or even from modern preachers. This is what I mean by Desert Island Theology. Imagine if you were stranded on a desert island. You have no knowledge of anything Christian. You have no knowledge of what a church “service” should look like, you have no knowledge about how a Christian looks in behavior or what a Christian believes, etc. Your memory has essentially been erased of everything it knows to be Christian both in teaching and practice. You are stranded on this desert island and you have nothing but your food, water, and your bible – the Word of God. If you were to read your bible, having no prior perspective to taint your understanding, do you think you would see things differently? I’m almost certain that you would.

Could you read the bible and come up with the modern worship service and leadership structure, just by reading the scriptures? Could it be possible?

Could you say that gifts of the Spirit have passed away and are not longer in operation? Would that be possible by only looking at scriptures?

Could you say that women are to preach and teach men in the assembly and have authority over them? Remember, you have no denominational or current cultural influence. You only have God’s word.

Could you find tithing taught in the New Testament, after the crucifixion where the law was nailed to the cross?

I could go on and on……

I can only imagine how many wonderful truths and practices would be “re-discovered” if more people had some Desert Island Theology. The great thing is, you don’t have to go to a desert island to think this way. It should be, and can be, your common practice when reading the word of God. Simply throw out any preconceived ideas you have about a biblical subject, anything you’ve read about it, or what you’ve seen practiced, and start reading the word of God with a clean slate in your mind. You will be surprised at how many issues are cleared up when you can really look at the word of God alone and see what it says, without any other doctrinal influences.

This is one of the practices the Lord taught me when I came out of the institutional church that I was born again at. Of course, prior to coming out of the church the Lord had showed me many truths that put me at odds with that church. But after I came out, I had to essentially unlearn what I had learned and re-read the scriptures as if I had no knowledge on any biblical subject. What an eye-opening and blessed experience it was and continues to be.

So today I’m promoting Desert Island Theology. Not that it needs to be your only method of theology, but it certainly should be your primary one. As I said above, I’m sure there would be a revolution of sorts in Christianity if people approached God’s word this way and believed it for what it simply says.

If you have never approached God’s word this way, then I encourage you to do so staring today. I know that you’ll be blessed by what you discover.

http://preachingjesus.wordpress.com/2012/08/23/desert-island-theology/

 2012/8/23 11:46









 Re: Desert Island Theology

Scott you have articulated what I have been thinking about. But for desert island theology to work one would have to leave organized Christianity behind. Nit a problem since I am PNG in mist established churches around here.

I like this new Desert Island Theology. Except I would probably call it Bear Cave Theology. But I love it.

Bearmaster.

 2012/8/23 12:10









 Re:

I envy the persecuted believers in restricted nations in that they have the simplicity of Christ and his word. They have the Holy Spirit to teach them. If they see something taught in the word. They readily believe it. They are not distracted or weighed down with the complexities of religious culture.

I am reminded of a statement Bunyon made. When he said pray and read and read and pray. For a little from God is better than a whole lot from men. Meaning pray nd read your Bible. God will teach you from his pword. The only theological library Bunyon ever had was his Bible. His teacher was the Holy Spirit. Spurgeon said were Bunyon cut. He would bleed scripture. Yet he probably had a grasp of theology better than most. He certainly communicated it to the common man.

I had often dreamed of another movement of God. One rooted in Christ and the New Testament. What would happen if a group of believers read only the New Testament. Or listened to it. No preconceived notions. Just read or listened to the word. And come together to share what they learned. I think you would have something of a first century church. This is already happening in third world countries. God grant that it would happen here.

From the bear cave.

 2012/8/23 14:21
PaulWest
Member



Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re:

This has the potential to be a really beneficial thread.

A few years ago, I was mulling over these very thoughts. In particular, the whole ordeal on tithing and Sabbath observance and whether they were still legally binding on Christians. So many believers go back and forth over these things; so many persuasive tomes have been written, theological swords crossed and brotherly fellowships compromised over these two intransigent tenets. Someone has to be wrong. They are either binding, or the Christian is free from the penalty of non-observance.

I thought of primitive missionaries presenting the New Testament to some aboriginal tribe in some far, occluded corner of the world. I envisioned a tribesman reading the New Testament for the first time from Matthew to Revelation in his own native language. And after reading it, other than receiving the obvious message of the cross, coming away with a compulsion to systematically tithe a percentage of his food or income or keep a certain day of the week. I saw this not only highly unlikely, but even in-congruent with the teachings of Paul.

From a New Testament "Desert Island" mindset, that is.

Brother Paul


_________________
Paul Frederick West

 2012/8/23 15:10Profile
PQ
Member



Joined: 2009/12/6
Posts: 101
Europe

 Re: Desert Island Theology

I like the Desert Island Theology; with the Holy Spirit present it is indeed beautiful.

Yet, i wonder what if it is a woman on that island.



pq*



_________________
PQ

 2012/8/23 15:21Profile









 Re:

Upon his servants both men and women the Spirit is poured out. Also there is neither male nor female. All are one in Christ Jesus. Something tells me the woman would be more free with the word of Christ on a desert island. Than say in the established church.

Just ny thoughts.

Bear.

 2012/8/23 15:52









 Re: Desert Island Theology


1Ti 5:17,18 Let theG3588 eldersG4245 that ruleG4291 wellG2573 be counted worthyG515 of doubleG1362 honour,G5092 especiallyG3122 they who labourG2872 inG1722 the wordG3056 andG2532 doctrine.G1319 ForG1063 theG3588 scriptureG1124 saith,G3004 Thou shalt notG3756 muzzleG5392 the oxG1016 that treadeth outG248 the corn. And,G2532 TheG3588 labourerG2040 is worthyG514 of hisG848 reward.G3408 [Luke 10:7]

 2012/8/24 4:28
savannah
Member



Joined: 2008/10/30
Posts: 2009


 Re: the Truth as it is in Jesus


1Ti 5:17,18 Let theG3588 eldersG4245 that ruleG4291 wellG2573 be counted worthyG515 of doubleG1362 honour,G5092 especiallyG3122 they who labourG2872 inG1722 the wordG3056 andG2532 doctrine.G1319 ForG1063 theG3588 scriptureG1124 saith,G3004 Thou shalt notG3756 muzzleG5392 the oxG1016 that treadeth outG248 the corn. And,G2532 TheG3588 labourerG2040 is worthyG514 of hisG848 reward.G3408 [Luke 10:7]

1 Timothy 5:17 The well-leading elders of double honour let them be counted worthy, especially those labouring in word and teaching

The above verse addresses men in the local assembly within the community. These would be stationary and not mobile as those spoken of in Luke 10:7 who were "sent ones" on a mission of evangelism.

On 1 Timothy 5:17 R.C.H. Lenski adds these insightful comments:

It is generally assumed that the elders were paid for their services in the apostolic churches. We are convinced that this assumption is not tenable. The probability is that none of them were paid. The elders of the synagogues were not paid or salaried. Each synagogue had a number of elders, too many to have a payroll that would be large enough to support them. The apostolic congregations imitated the synagogue in this respect. Our passage speaks of "twofold honor," not of twofold financial pay or salary. Paul's two quotations support the injunction relating to according due honor to diligent elders; such honor is to be their reward just as the ox treading out grain is accorded the privilege of eating as he tramped along, just as the worker is accorded his pay. The tertium of the analogy lies in the worthiness and not in the identity of what the three are worthy of: the elders worthy of what naturally should go with their office--honor; the ox worthy of what naturally goes with the task for which he is employed--wisps of grain; the workman worthy of what naturally goes with his work--pay for his work.

George Mueller refused to accept a salary for his preaching.

Why? In his own words:

“The whole system tends to the bondage of the servant of Christ. One must be unusually faithful and intrepid if he feels no temptation to keep back or in some degree modify his message in order to please men, when he remembers that the very parties, most open to rebuke and most liable to offence, are perhaps the main contributors toward his salary.” ~ George Mueller ~

Again,in Luke 10:7 the instructions to the seventy "sent ones" was to be on the move and receive the hospitality given to them during their stay in a given city. They were not remaining in that place but were evangelists on the move proclaiming the Gospel.

We see in another place where elders were appointed in every city or assembly.

Titus 1:4,5 to Titus, a true child according to our common faith: Grace, mercy, peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior. For this cause I left you in Crete, that you might set in order the things lacking and appoint elders in every city, as I ordered you.

We've strayed very far from the Truth as it is in Jesus, which we read about in our Bible and the first century family of God who were called christians.

Resume's and job descriptions with a salary connected were unknown for pastor's(synonyms - elder,bishop)for centuries. But Rome and Constantine stepped in and muddied those waters too. And as I stated above,we've strayed very far from the Truth as it is in Jesus, which we read about in our Bible and the first century family of God who were called christians.

I agree with Paul W. that this is a potentially good thread.

 2012/8/24 8:06Profile









 Re:

Scott has done a service to bring this thread to the forum. The question whether one can learn from Jesus and him alone may be put to the test and quite soon. A few in this forum have been saying that persecution will soon come to N. America. Actually it is already here in a small measure. With persrcution will arise an apostate church. This church will be the evangelical 501c3 structure. As traditional pastors give way to political correctness the remnant will be driven out.

Away from the traditional teaching venues the remnant may have only tbeir New Testament and the Spirit of God to teach them. Whether the believer is alone or perhaps blessed with one or two others. Desert island theology may be more near than we realize.

Just some thoughts from the bear cave.

 2012/8/24 9:15
MaryJane
Member



Joined: 2006/7/31
Posts: 3057


 Re:

I thought of primitive missionaries presenting the New Testament to some aboriginal tribe in some far, occluded corner of the world. I envisioned a tribesman reading the New Testament for the first time from Matthew to Revelation in his own native language. And after reading it, other than receiving the obvious message of the cross, coming away with a compulsion to systematically tithe a percentage of his food or income or keep a certain day of the week. I saw this not only highly unlikely, but even in-congruent with the teachings of Paul.

From a New Testament "Desert Island" mindset, that is.

Brother Paul

__________________

Love how you painted that picture for us. I believe that you are right in your conclusion and I have seen the same things on a personal level.

As I have read the Bible and sought hard after the LORD on the matter of giving I have seen that its not by compulsion of the law that giving comes from, but rather by the leading of the LORD. I am learning what it means to be a cheerful giver, to share what I have with others whether it be monies, food, clothes, even time. I want to be a giver and put others before self. As I read through the New Testament from the "Desert Island" mindset I come away with being a servant and a joyful giver. First a servant unto the LORD JESUS and then to one another. Giving joyfully to others has taught me so much, there is no "have to" involved. There is no compulsion by law, there is only the sweet calling of my LORD and a desire to respond to HIS leading. It has also taught me not to hold onto anything here in this world, no treasures to store up because they all pass away but the things of HIS KINGDOM they are for ever.

You know when I was young my family was really poor, we had no money coming in on a regular bases because my dad would not work and my mother struggled to feed 7 children as best she could. The interesting thing about those times was that I can remember getting up in the mornings and the cupboards were empty. There was no food, as I ate the last of the oatmeal mom had stretched to feed us all, I remember feeling hungry and wondering would there be anything for dinner or breakfast the next day. The amazing thing was that because of the heart and generosity of others seeking to serve the LORD there always was. People from the church would bring food over in boxes for us. Now all these years later I don't really remember the kinds of foods that were in those boxes but I vividly remember the hearts of those who brought the food, they loved the LORD and wanted to give to help others. JESUS had given them the desire to be servants and cheerful givers and I was blessed as a small child because of it :)

God Bless
maryjane

 2012/8/24 9:16Profile





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