Previously (here) I’ve set-up the problem of Christian unity and suggested that there are 3 ways potentially to solve it. I use examples of female speaking, power evangelism (healing alongside verbal proclamation) and holding events in pubs. For models 1 and 2 see here and here. Here I will examine a third approach:
Decide that no matter what the issue, those leading can practice what they want, as long as it is still keeping the main thing, the main thing and within evangelicalism’s bounds. Want a female speaker to give a prophetic utterance in a pub? Be my guest! It’s allowing all things in love
What are the advantages of this model?
- It seems to allow for diversity with a unity. Some would say the other-person-centred-ness of it is the very thing we find in the Godhead.
- it helps people see what and why others believe what they believe
And the disadvantages?
- again, it’s tricky to define evangelicalism in doctrine and emphasis and very easy to condemn others if some fractional thing is seen to be unbiblical in someone elses’ theology/practice
- it is hard. To be asked to positively support people who are doing things that you’ve consciously decided are not merited or are unbiblical, is hard. In practice this often ends up with everyone doing their own thing separately and yet claiming unity.