Mending the torn theological ignorance of evangelical Christianity is like the blind man telling his deaf child, “listen to me!”  I wrote a book in 1996 that received limited distribution, but I do recall a pastor calling me to say that the book had caused a disturbance in the church.  After he chastised me I asked him if it was true or false.  He responded, “that’s not the point.”  Yes, truth is the point of the entire Christian life and experience.   Biblical truth is necessary to restore theological integrity.  Two examples of theological ignorance will suffice to illustrate the need for reformation.

Millions of professing Christians do not  understand the basic Christian doctrine of the church. The cultural milieu of the western world has successfully beleaguered professing Christians into the notion that “church” is something you go to.  I’ve heard it ad nauseam, “Let’s go to church” or “I went to church” as if the church is a place, institution, or even worse, a building.  The Holy Spirit will enable a person to be a member of the church (the body of Christ) one time in this life.  The new believer (Christian) as an individual becomes part of the collective church.  Then he or she and other Christians will meet collectively as a church to worship and carry out the mission and ministry of the church.

Most everyday I go into a public arena I will greet someone only to hear the response, “I’m good!”   I realize that most of them do not have any serious training in biblical doctrine or theology.   I realize that most of them do not understand the doctrine of the noetic effect of sin or the doctrine of original sin.   Total depravity is also foreign to them and when they do stumble over a biblical text like Psalm 51:5, they dismiss it with the old, “I know what the Bible says, but…”  Many people do not stop and think before they use words.  Obviously, the word “good” is merely an adjective that describes a quality of life.  There are, no doubt, hundreds of definitions or nuances to the definition of the word “good.”  The thinking Christian will qualify the word “good” or the concept of “goodness” to the moral condition of the object of goodness.  God is morally perfect, therefore He is morally good.  Man’s essential condition is moral imperfection, therefore he is not morally good.  His thoughts and actions may produce good (an indefinite quality) only if the good works are mediated by Christ and according to the will of God. This is going way too long, so let me summarize.

 Since the Bible indicates that all human beings are sinners and continue in sin (Rom. 3:23), they cannot possibly be “good.”  Like Jesus said, “No one is good [the essence of moral goodness] but One, that is, God” (Mark 10:18).  Christians are declared righteous, but they are not made good.  The Westminster assembly explained in these terms:  “From this original corruption, whereby we are utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite to all good, and wholly inclined to all evil, do proceed all actual transgressions” (WCF 6.4).  The Confession further explains:  “This corruption of nature, during this life, does remain in those who are regenerated; and although it be, through Christ, pardoned, and put to death; yet the corruption of nature, and all the demonstrations of it, are truly and properly sin” (WCF 6.5).  Suggestion:  Humble yourself, trust Christ, and do good works.  I think I heard a faint voice that said, “I know what the Bible says, but….”