Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. – Jeremiah 6:16
Bill at ughleethoughts wonders about “the proclivity of many in our 21st century U.S. culture to view anything that is old as something to be discarded”. This is as true in the church as it is outside of it. If something doesn’t seem to “work”, we assume that _it_, not _we_, is wrong and we discard it in favor of a new philosophy, hermeneutic, program, approach, or whatever.
We abandon a plain way of understanding the Bible. We abandon the way we “do church” in favor of house churches, emerging churches, purpose-driven churches, and seeker-sensitive churches. We redefine “discipleship” to mean something other than “keeping Christ’s commandments” and come up with new definitions and new kinds of Christians. We decide that centuries of instruction on practical steps to live a Christian life is “legalism”, and decide that if you just love Jesus enough you’ll automatically stop sinning, start reading your Bible, praying, and fellowshipping with others. Theology becomes dry and wooden; church is stifling; preaching against sin is moralizing behavior modification legalism; the music is dull; the traditional Bible translations are too hard to understand. We’ve even changed the actual format of the Bible because two columns of words are boring – the Bible now looks like Cosmo!
If you have something that has apparently been successful for a long time, and then it is apparently unsuccessful, it’s silly to conclude that it’s just broken. The problem is more likely with _you_.
I want the old paths. Give me that old-time religion.