Jan wrote: "I probably have said this before. I accept all people who
>believe the infallibility of the Bible as Christian brothers and sisters,
>who depend for their salvation on Christ's death."
I replied: "Do you accept me too? I could not subscribe to the above
Jan answered, "Depends."
I need not read further then. You draw the circle narrow, where only those
acceptable to your doctrine(s) may be considered "Christians." I assume then
that I would not be welcome in your church, for I draw the circle wide
indeed. Enough to include you, of course.
It is indeed fortunate that neither of us are in a position to define the
circle in heavenly terms.
When I was first a Xtian I went to a church where the pastor was a
fundementalist. Being quite new to the faith, even though I was 31 years
old, I was sometimes puzzled by his sermons, but decided to give them a fair
hearing. Luckily I had a Lutheran brother and a Presbyterian father-in-law
who were sometimes able to give me some perspective.
Pastor Miller left that church, but we remained friends for several years
through correspondence. Then one day he wrote me and said, having joined the
GARB, that he had to end our friendship and correspondence as he was now
convinced of the principle of "secondary separation." That is, since I would
not renounce my fellowship with my Lutheran brother and Presbyterian
father-in-law, that no matter how "fundie" I might see myself he could no
longer have fellowship.
I liked Jim Miller a lot -- he was a great preacher and a close friend. And
his letter really hurt me. I was at that time beginning to see what
fundamentalism could turn into -- fortunately my other fundie friends never
went that far. But from that day I am convinced that fundamentalism is
wrong. Seriously wrong.
One day, of course, we will know. In the meantime, my circle is wide, for I
see it as a very great sin to read a Christian brother out of the circle
and, at most, a small error in accepting one into the circle who might no
Hoss (aka Burgy)
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