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Doctrianity

August 16, 2013

In today’s “Christian” world it is odd how one must either be a trinitarian or an anti-trinitarian. Any uncertainty about the doctrine of the Trinity, such as voiced by David, is automatically considered an heresy and given one of many labels, such as Arianism, Modalism, etc. Anything that doesn’t fit the trinitarian definition has to be classed into some counter-definition. Definition is the all important thing in a religion who’s main focus is doctrines, rather than Christ.Will the Theologians

As David Bercot put it in “Will The Theologians Please Sit Down”: “When Christianity was young, the focus was on Jesus Christ and His kingdom—not theology. To be sure, there are foundational doctrines that Christians have always considered essential to the faith. But somehow the things considered essential have grown from a few sentences to a long list of theological tenets, many of which were unknown to the early Christians.

In the beginning, Christians understood that the essence of Christianity was an obedient love-faith relationship with Jesus Christ. This was not just any relationship, but a relationship that produced genuine kingdom fruit.

But then something happened: Theologians took over the church. Once they took over, the emphasis soon changed from godly fruit to “orthodox” theology. Christianity became Doctrianity. …it’s time to let Jesus speak through the pages of the Gospels without filtering His teachings through the denials and mental gymnastics of the theologians. It’s time for the children of the kingdom to stand up for Jesus and the gospel He preached—and for the theologians to sit down”.

Bishop John Shelby Spong, Episcopal Diocese of...

Or as Bishop John Shelby Spong said, while answering question on the Trinity: “I doubt that Jesus was a Trinitarian; I am quite certain that Paul was not. The Trinity is a human definition of God, and since the human mind could never fully embrace the mystery and wonder of God, to literalize a human definition of God borders on the absurd. For human beings to worship their own creation is the essence of idolatry.

The Trinity is a definition not of God, but of the human experience of the divine and is, therefore, an attempt to make rational sense out of that human experience.

We experience God as other, beyond anything that our minds can grasp. This is what we mean when we say God is Father – the Ground of all being.

We experience God as an inward presence, so deep within us that we cannot name the reality we know is there. That is what we mean when we say God is Spirit, ineffable, life-giving, inward and real.

We experience God in the life of others. Sometimes to lesser degrees, sometimes to what seems like a total degree. This is what we mean when we call Jesus “the son,” and why we frame doctrines like “the Incarnation.” Our experience was and is that in Jesus we saw the presence of God flowing through his human life.

Is that who God is? No, but that is what our experience of God is and so we claim it.

The Trinity is not a definition of God; it is an experience into which we live”.

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