The Sociology of the Church

Some unrelated quotes from the book:

…the reasons for denominational diversity are deep-seated, complex, and cannot be removed by a wave of a magic wand or anathema. The problem can only be effectively resolved by local communication, cooperation, and prayer. It must be recognized by all parties that there are legitimate strengths and weaknesses in all the branches of the church.

The very best, and indeed only way to overcome disunity is to take as much of the truth as possible, make it as visible as possible through life and proclamation, and suffuse one’s life with as much communion with God as possible. These radical steps may seem calculated to separate the church further from itself, and they are indeed the opposite of the worldly lowest common denominator approach to unity, but they are the only steps God will honor.

The schism is the failure to maintain communion with God, and to recognize the sacramental presence of Christ in other churches.

Also, the teacher in the institutional church has a right to expect a special power from the Holy Spirit in his teaching that the parachurch teacher cannot claim.

The second commandment forbids bowing down and serving anything made by human hands in an attempt to conjure and manipulate God. It does not forbid the making of artistic or symbolic objects, nor does it forbid their placement in the environment of worship.

The most obvious bodily movement missing from “Bible believing Protestant” culture and worship is the sacred dance. The psalms repeatedly enjoin dancing, yet psalm-singing churches do not dance, and neither do hymn-singing churches. If there was ever proof that a Greek rationalistic intellectualism has robbed the church of her Biblical foundations, this is it. The African churches, which have not been ruined by rationalism, use dancing. Perhaps we shall learn from them.

in spite of all the yelling about abortion, and all the rhetoric about abortion’s being murder, how many evangelical leaders have come out and demanded the death penalty for conspiracy to commit abortion? Has anybody? No wonder God does not take evangelicalism seriously!

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