Sometimes being nice just doesn’t work and being mean or nasty doesn’t work either but to avoid the latter there must be a reasonable attitude present to insure that the latter doesn’t rule the day. From my position in the pew, mine is just one of many opinions and is open for discussion, correction, or just plain ignoring. Now with the disclaimer intact we move on to the subject of this blog. I believe it is time for a little “righteous indignation”. I will use Webster’s definition for this subject. I should say up front so there is no misunderstanding, I am not advocating turning over the communion table, or any act that is destructive but just talking a little louder, being firm in our faith and not accepting that which God found to be un-holy.
Full Definition of RIGHTEOUS
: acting in accord with divine or moral law : free from guilt or sin
a : morally right or justifiable
b : arising from an outraged sense of justice or morality
Full Definition of INDIGNATION
: anger aroused by something unjust, unworthy, or mean
To be fair there are many issues that cause despair, disruption and division in our church today but the top two that have my attention would be same-gender and this music thing that is going on. The same-gender is denomination wide, while the music thing is not as big an issue; it is a little irritation with a big scab that some people keep scratching. I am going to pull one instance from Scripture that I believe fits today’s definition of “righteous indignation” . It is also present in two other books of the bible. I am using Matthew 21: 12-17.
Jesus at the Temple
12 Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13 “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer, but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.”
I have written other blogs dealing with same-gender issues and as a reference I include this link. (https://fromthepewblog.wordpress.com/2015/03/)
I have always tried to be respectful and have never resorted to personal attacks or unfair judgments. As we read these verses from Matthew 21, we can best imagine the reaction of the crowd best by using a recent modern-day phase. “Shock and Awe” no doubt was felt and expressed by many and those in leadership positions within the Temple were furious and consumed with anger. Our debate over this gender issue is starting to look to me like a Reformation of the church. Back to Webster’s little book.
: the act or process of improving something or someone by removing or correcting faults, problems, etc.
the Reformation : the 16th-Century religious movement that led to the establishment of the Protestant churches
This is my view from the pew. Going back to Jesus and the event in the Temple, first thing he had the authority to be there, it was his father’s house. We find justification for his actions in the verse 13. “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.’” I am not sure how all this debate, searching for loop holes like W C Field and judicial foot work and lastly the changing of the wording in the discipline answers the core question. Well I’ve been down this path before so let’s wrap this up. I believe that this is an attempt at Restoration of Church Law to meet the ever-changing standards of today’s church and society. I turn to Matthew Henry’s commentaries to close.
“What he said, to justify himself, and to convict them (Matt. 21:13); It is written. Note, In the reformation of the church, the eye must be upon the scripture, and that must be adhered to as the rule, the pattern in the mount; and we must go no further than we can justify ourselves with, It is written……”
Oh yes, that music thing. Check back next blog. I will be here in the pew to sing that song.
(*Scripture, Matthew Henry’s commentaries, Webster’s Dictionary and prayer)