1 Timothy at the church weekend - me, Ken, and Jez, one talk each.
Lots to learn. There's something about learning together in a church family that is just special.
Anyway, interesting heresy in 1 Timothy, if such a thing isn't heretical to say. There are people saying that things in creation are bad in chapter 4: avoiding foods and not getting married. Then in chapter 6 we have people teaching wrong things for the sake of getting richer: materialism. Wrong approaches to creation. Saying it's too bad, and saying it's too good - both are problems.
So, what's the way forward tgo approach creation well? I think doing that has got to be a defining feature of the church as it seeks to live out its calling as a pillar of truth in the community: protecting the Gospel and showing it off.
Well, chapter 4 - accept God's gifts and be thankful. And chapter 6 - be content with what you have. You see creation is a poor master but a great servant. As a path to helping us worship God, thank him and give him the honour he is due, it's a great tool. As a master which calls for our loyalty it is a rubbish, a slave driver offering no comfort: it will lead us to be pierced by many griefs.
I think this also sheds a bit of light on the women stuff: which is all about the church modelling creation order: the right approach to creation - wanting to restore it's perfect model.
Someone this weekend rebuked us for not reading enough CS Lewis! Well, 1 Timothy reminded me of that quote about creation being like a beam of sunlight in a dark room - meant to lead us to look for the sun, not just admire the beam. When we see creation that way we can enjoy it the how we are meant to, as a path to God, without living under it's cruel rule which ends up hurting us.
How foolish we are to swap the rule of a loving father for the harsh coldness of a created idol. Maybe Christ Church's Project 2007 will help us learn that as a church.
Question: how can we model loving creation for how it helps us know God better, as part of our evangelistic task as a church? Any ideas anyone?