Sunday, March 6, 2011

Jurisdictions of the Family & Local Church

I know what you're thinking, "Whats wrong with you family integrated people? With all the problems in our world, why would you pick on youth ministry? How can you blame all of our problems on Sunday schools and youth groups? They're just teaching the Bible for crying out loud!  Don't you trust your elders? Are you scared to let some old grandma teach your children for one hour a week? You have issues! Are you the spawn of Satan or what?"

I guess I can understand such a reaction, but at least hear out the arguments and compare them to Scripture before condemning a differing view point out of hand. Refusing to cross-examine our own points of view isn't so Biblical either (Proverbs 18: 17).

I would like to clarify that I, and many other "family integrated people", do not believe that Sunday school and youth groups are the cause of all of our problems. Many of us do not believe that modern youth ministry methodologies are the cause of our problems but rather that they are more of a symptom of far deeper issues. Perhaps the greatest cause of our problems, after the obvious first cause of our fallen depraved nature, is that we have departed from the Law/Word of God and that we no longer think that Scripture is sufficient to direct us in every area and aspect of life.

Our social problems, our family problems, our governmental problems, our financial problems and all our other problems stem from this same root. UnBiblical youth ministry methodologies, as an almost omnipresent symptom of this deeper problem, is just one of many ways to focus attention on the greater problem. Swinging the axe at this idol tends to stir up controversy, controversy leads to discussion and argument, discussion and argument provokes thought, thought coupled with the Spirit fueled desire to know and practice the truth leads to reformation and Biblical reformation glorifies God and brings his blessings. "Iron sharpens Iron" (Proverbs 27: 17) and it rarely happens without a few sparks, right? Carried out in a Christ like manner, controversy is very Biblical, good and necessary in a fallen world.

In this message Pastor Einwechter takes us to the Biblical starting point. If we're going to understand any of these problems and work towards Biblical solutions we have to understand jurisdiction; who God has made responsible for doing what. In some ways this is probably one of the primary and most fundamental of our problems as many of us have never even considered asking "Who has God put in charge of this or that area of life and what are the Biblical bounds of their authority?" A problem will hardly be fixed properly until the authorities that God has equipped to take care of it start applying the proper solutions.

This is one of those messages you might want to listen to several times just to let it all soak in a little:

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