Thursday, September 17, 2009

Debates, Discussions and Discourse

I've found that debating things doesn't ever seem to win anyone over. Look up, ignoring some of his behavior, has validity in his posts about sticking to "preaching the Word."

I do not agree in the slightest that discussion is wrong. However, I don't see much in the way of good fruit coming out of many debates.

People learn as they discuss things, they discover the things they don't know and reinforce the things they do know. Deep discussions are needed.

It's clear that there was discussion in the Acts 15 meeting.

Acts 15:22-29
22Then the apostles and elders, with the whole church, decided to choose some of their own men and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They chose Judas (called Barsabbas) and Silas, two men who were leaders among the brothers. 23With them they sent the following letter: The apostles and elders, your brothers, To the Gentile believers in Antioch, Syria and Cilicia: Greetings. 24We have heard that some went out from us without our authorization and disturbed you, troubling your minds by what they said. 25So we all agreed to choose some men and send them to you with our dear friends Barnabas and Paul— 26men who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27Therefore we are sending Judas and Silas to confirm by word of mouth what we are writing. 28It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: 29You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things. Farewell.
They came together and "decided" to send... they "all agreed to choose"... it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us...

They didn't just preach to each other, these Godly men came together and worked through these things. They laboured in the Word together, and that surely involved discussion. Am I arguing from silence here? You would be hard pressed to make a compelling argument that men (even if they were inspired) could evaluate what burdens should be placed on the Church. Such an argument would also be, and I believe more so, from silence.

However, I'm interested in the potential for growth. Is there a better way to reach and teach those whose theology doesn't match the Scriptures than debating?

BTW just because one is in error in some bit of Theology doesn't make them a False Convert.. so just preaching the Gospel to the one in error isn't the whole solution.

1 comment:

Look up said...

"I've found that debating things doesn't ever seem to win anyone over."

Attaboy, that is exactly it!!!

Study this one:

Job 6:25 How forcible are right words! but what doth your arguing reprove?

Who has the right words? Or better yet, where are the right words? The obvious hint is: They have already been written down millenia ago.

There is nothing more forceful than the word of God put forth by a servant whose heart is right towards God. EVERYTHING else is an absolute waste of time and energy.