Skip to main content

Would you rather be open minded?


Would you rather be open-minded or narrow-minded? A quick check of the synonyms reveals the essential difference between those two terms. If you are open-minded, you are accepting, tolerant, observant, unbiased and understanding. But if you are narrow-minded, you are bigoted, conservative, hidebound, opinionated, reactionary and intolerant. Let’s all be open-minded!

But is that always a good idea. Herschel Hobbs, the preacher and theologian, said this:
“No sane person wants a banker who says that two plus two equals three. We do not want a pharmacist who just throws together any drugs that may suit his fancy. We want him to follow exactly the doctor’s prescription. This is true narrow-mindedness. We commend this quality in lesser matters-finances and health. But many condemn it in matters of religion.”

If it’s narrow-minded and intolerant to claim that Jesus is the only way to God, then Jesus himself must have been narrow-minded and intolerant, because that’s exactly what he claimed about himself (see, for example, Matthew 11:27 All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him and John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.). Jesus also claimed to be the Son of God from heaven and that only those who believe in him will have eternal life. Yet when we read the four Gospels, we don’t encounter a narrow-minded, intolerant, arrogant man. Rather, we see a wide-hearted, selfless, and humble man, full of grace and compassion toward others.


Where God has spoken, his truth is not up for debate. We don’t debate “Do not murder” or “Salvation is found in no one else” or “Abstain from sexual immorality.” We believe that Jesus meant it when he said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

In Revelation 2:12-17, Christ confronted a congregation that had become too open-minded for its own good:

“And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write: These are the words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword.

“I know where you are living, where Satan’s throne is. Yet you are holding fast to my name, and you did not deny your faith in me even in the days of Antipas my witness, my faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan lives. But I have a few things against you: you have some there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the people of Israel, so that they would eat food sacrificed to idols and practice fornication. So you also have some who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans. Repent then. If not, I will come to you soon and make war against them with the sword of my mouth. Let anyone who has an ear listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. To everyone who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give a white stone, and on the white stone is written a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it.We need to hear what our Lord says because many churches today find themselves in the same position."

Christians are too be narrow-minded about God’s truth: God has spoken in his Word and that his Word is to be obeyed, not debated.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Power that Perseveres

The dictionary defines hope as looking out for something good; a belief that what we wish for will come. Are you hoping for the positive outcome of your dream, a sickness, or finances? Do you see the desired end result in your mind's eye so vividly that you can almost touch it? What is your hope based on? Were you very excited yesterday when the stock market jumped or the doctor gave an optimistic prognosis? How about today, when the market had a sudden drop and the hospital reported further complications in your condition? Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1).  Now, what does that mean? You mean that no matter how hard it gets and when everything points to disaster you still have to hope against all hope? So, if you clench your teeth, purse your lips and scrunch your eyes together in faith trusting your dilemma will pass, it should go, right? Well, let's have a look how the Bible puts it... We rejoice in our sufferings, k

Public worship continues during this government national lockdown.

Church worship in my churches, St Pauls, St Lukes and St Mary's in Wallasey, continues each week.  If people are able to make it out, you are welcome. Wherever they are  are we are praying for them. A church minister's letter,  signed by 1,161 English ministers and priests,  was sent to the British government saying:  "The suspension of church services during the first lockdown was something that we were willing to do, given the unknown nature and scale of the threat we were facing. Yet the costs were high. Our greatest concern was that for four months God was not publicly worshipped in this country. And we have all seen first-hand the deep damage that this caused to many people. Since restarting in July, church has been a vital lifeline to many who have been struggling with loneliness and other negative effects of lockdown." Churches have gone to great lengths to ensure that worship need not be suspended again and put in place thorough COVID-secure measures. As a res

Return of the King on Palm Sunday

Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien tells a story in an imaginary world that somehow rings true. In Tolkien’s fantastic universe of humans, hobbits, elves, wizards, dwarves and monsters, a great evil threatens to cover the world in darkness and make every living being its slave. Chaos is the order of the day. Fear rules the hearts of most. Hope is faint. Yet amid the darkness, there are flickers of light in the love, unity and courage of  a few heroic characters. One of them is Aragon, who is destined to be king. The trilogy ends with his long-awaited return to the throne and triumphant deliverance of his people. Mark 11:1-10 is one of the Bible passages for Palm Sunday, it tells of Jesus entering Jerusalem to the cheers of the crowd, it is the return of the King: Now when they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the village in front of you, and immediately as you enter it you will find a c