I visited another church this morning, after a long sabbatical, and left feeling grumpy and discontent all the way around. What do people in a church have in common that people at a sporting event don’t? Just that the other team never shows up. Our team is the right one; we listen to a pep talk, watch a performance, leave in a rush.
I am sure Christians are meant, generally and usually, to help one another. I am sure we are meant to help one another without preference for riches, status, or intelligence. As I am sitting there silently cataloging all the things that this man up front is misrepresenting about God, Jesus, and the Bible, I am also berating myself that fellowship is not based on excellence of doctrine. It’s not, or it shouldn’t be.
But it is not the well who need a physician. The guy up front who knows everything doesn’t want your help. He may want to be helped to accomplish his program and goals, but he’s not the least interested in what you might sincerely think to be in his own best interest. He already knows about his own best interest. He even already knows what’s in your best interest, even though he never saw you till today: You should come back here, listen to me, and do what I say.
Maybe some of the other people sitting around do need help. But you are not allowed to talk to them and they are not allowed to listen to you. You are only allowed to do those Things Which Need To Be Done, which have already been determined by The People Who Know What You Need. And then get out of here and mind your own business.
Well… okay. Goodbye.