alien righteousness

Two Questions and Answers from Welcome to a Reformed Church by Hyde

These answers are helpful.  Taken from Daniel R. Hyde’s book Welcome to a Reformed Church: A Guide For Pilgrims from the back of the book in Appendix number 1.

Q. Why are you so theological?  You should be more practical.  Christianity is all about actions such as feeding the homeless.
A. This question assumes a dichotomy, which the modern church has brought from our culture, in which theory and practice are divorced.  Who needs to learn math when we have computers, right?  As Christians, our heavenly Father has rescued us from the bondage of such a mind-set, calling us to love Him with all that we are, our minds (Matt. 22:37; Rom. 12:2) as well as our bodies (Rom. 12:1).  This means that what we believe about God actually has practical effects on how we live our lives before Him in the world He has made.
     The question for us really is this:  Why should we actually feed the homeless?  I ask this because the premise that Christianity is about doing things and not about believing things is itself a theological belief.  Anything we say in response to this question is theology.  We seek to have the mind of Christ (Phil. 2:5) so that we will be empowered biblically to live for the Lord.
     So why should we care about feeding the homeless?  We should care because it is a way of showing Christ’s concern for them and, Lord willing, sharing the gospel of eternal life with them.  God cares for the outcast and, in fact, became an outcast in Jesus Christ (151).
Q. Why do you put so much emphasis on John Calvin and Martin Luther, for example?  Isn’t Christianity all about Jesus Christ?
A. Yes, our faith is all about God.  One of the slogans that came out of the Reformation is soli Deo Gloria, or “To God alone be glory.” Because of this, Calvin was buried in an unmarked grave and Luther warned his people never to follow him.  We talk about them because, in the providence of God, these men were gifted with the talents and abilities to build up the church in its faith at a time when these gifts were most needed.  Our focus is not on the men themselves, but on what they taught so clearly about our faith and focus on Jesus Christ.  As I said earlier, the churches of the Reformation were called “Calvinist” and “Lutheran” only by their enemies (151-152).

Other questions and answers covered in the appendix are:

Are you Roman Catholic?  Are you fundamentalists? Are you evangelicals? Why is your worship so boring, cold, and serious?  Why do Reformed churches sing psalms? They are so boring and irrelevant.  Do you care about evangelism? Are you anti-Semitic? Why do you seem so strict and legalistic? Is there a Reformed view of creation? What do Reformed churches believe about the Holy Spirit? What do Reformed churches believe about “the end times”?

If you are reading these questions give me a comment if you want me to type up the answer from the book and I’ll email it to you, or you should order this clear, little book.


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