C. Michael Patton on Which is More Important – Believing Correctly or Applying What We Believe

I think this is a very thought provoking blog post over at Parchment and Pen. Here is the link. There is a sense in which God is happy when what we belief produces action. On the other hand, as mentioned in the last post on Romans 10, it is possible that we have lots of actions but can do so for all the wrong reasons (out of a zeal wrongly applied). I think the solution is found in the middle ground. When we believe the fundamentals of our faith, it will express itself by action. In other words, if you know Jesus died for you and he calls you into covenant relationship with him, it makes us want to go and tell. It makes us want to invite others in. It should make us want to be salt and light. So yes, application for application sake is not the heart of the Gospel…the facts of the death, burial and resurrection are. But on the other hand, I would questions someone’s faith who has believed all the right things for decades but you couldn’t tell they were a Christian by their actions.

0 Responses to C. Michael Patton on Which is More Important – Believing Correctly or Applying What We Believe

  1. Rex says:

    I certainly feel there is a fundamental core to the Christian faith that must be believed to be a “confessing” Christian (“confessing” assumes belief). However, I do not believe being a confessing Christian is all that we are called to be. We are called to be what I call a “confessionally committed” Christian (biblically speaking, a disciple – learner and imitator – of Jesus). We are called to a confession that results in a specific new way of living. This is explains the ‘indicative to imperative’ pattern found in many of Paul’s letters. Where I think people get off track is when they insist that it does not matter what you believe or on the opposite end (and what I see more conservative circles) that every last Christian doctrine (i.e., Trinity, church polity, end-times, etc…) must be precisely accurate in a persons belief.

    Grace and peace,

    Rex

  2. Hank says:

    Thank you for linking that article Matt. So many Christians focus on having the right belief without ever being changed by it while others just as mistakingly believe they can please God with their actions — all the while being virtually ignorant of his truth. I agree with your statment that, “…the solution is found in the middle ground.”

    Now, if I could only get there….

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