September 16, 2003

Before they had finished breakfast...

...the clouds had joined into an unbroken roof, and a straight grey rain came softly and steadily down. "It's a good day for long tales," said Tom Bombadil, "for questions and for answers..." (Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring, chapter 7)

It's that kind of day here, and while I have no long tales to tell (and I suspect that you wouldn't stay around long enough to hear them if I did), I do have lots of questions, and maybe even a few answers...

I'm really enjoying the exchange I'm having with Karl Thienes of St. Stephen's Musings over at Justin Baeder's blog, Radical Congruency on what the em-church can borrow from other traditions. You can read it here. We've come to the issue of the "essentials" of the Faith. What must one believe to be a Christ-follower in the biblical sense? Karl feels that the ancient creedal statements are a good summary of the essentials; coming from a non-creedal background, I long for something more explicitly stated in the Scriptures. Lately I'm leaning toward 1 Corinthians 15:1ff:
By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared..."
I'll confess though that contextually this passage seems questionable as a "Biblical creed." What are your thoughts?


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