lørdag 11. februar 2017

Avoid quarreling about words!

Today’s verse reminds me of a phrase from William Booth. Here it is presented in a prose version (1):
"If an officer of The Salvation Army should enter the mazes of theology, he would get lost and lose the battle – and he deserves to lose. An officer is not a priest, nor Levite, but a merciful Samaritan. Booth never got tired of repeating that he never desired to create a church or a cult. This shows that his greatest desire was to stay away from fights concerning doctrine. Partly, he did not want to have the main emphasis on doctrine, but on life, and partly he wanted to keep the door open for himself to all confessions .... By the way, He also received compliments from Cardinal Manning for his ecumenical theology". (2)
When I first read this description as a younger officer, I was very excited and proud. Strangely, it sharpened my appetite for reading more theology - but not for the purpose of engaging in quarreling about words. I am actually once again in total agreement with Paul, the Theologian:
Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen.
2 Timothy 2:14
To read theology has given me a confidence in what I believe. Therefore, I can take it quite easy when I am challenged on my stands in various theological issues. I do not need to argue, because I know that it is possible to interpret the same passages of Scripture in different ways, but I know what I believe. Looking back, I realize that it is actually very many years since I last had a harrowing theological conversation, and I do not miss it. Today I want to enter into dialogue with an attitude of respect, realizing that the person with whom I speak, may have seen something in the Scripture that God has not yet revealed to me. 

'Manna' for today:
"Make every effort to live in peace with everyone" (3)
(1) Laura Petri: "Pearl Fishing" Salvata Publishing, Oslo pp. 104-105. Laura Petri became a ‘slum-sister’ in The Salvation Army in Sweden 1902. She resigned as an officer in 1916 and got her Ph. D. on a dissertation on: "Catherine Booth and Salvationism" in 1925.
(2) Read more about interesting relationship between Manning and Booth HERE
(2) Hebrews 12:14

Ingen kommentarer: