Idealism is not an answer – its ideal – but not an answer.
Scripture is not an answer – it’s a written statement – but not an answer.
How afraid are we to be ‘wrong’? What price is paid in the struggle for the seeking truth when we close off our minds and ears? If you have the truth/answer then you should have nothing to fear in talking doctrine – because your truth will bare you out – correct?
I typed the 2 sentences above because of what I have seen in many discussions with Christians over the past year – on a variety of sites – in which they use those 2 ideas as an answer. Those are not answers – they need to be expanded on to become answers.
Anyone can quote scripture but to shows what it means is quite another thing. Holding to ideals is a good thing – but even ideals do not solve problems in the ‘real world’.
EX1: It is ideal to think everyone should be saved.
EX2: ‘’AND IT SHALL BE THAT EVERYONE WHO CALLS ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED.’ (Acts 2:21)
Now if we were discussing ‘salvation’ and the ideal was all should be saved – well people will find a passage to back that – like the Acts passage. However, both need to be explained in detail as to (1) the definition of terms in the ideal and (2) what the passage means via interpretation (and its definitions).
The ideal is all should be ‘saved’ – what does that mean?
The passage – ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved’ – what does it mean?
I would add the obvious 3rd category – how did you analyze this idea in real life appliance? How did it look and what does it mean?
We are all subject to interpretation and our experiences in life – they will help us look at scripture. I don’t think we have anything to hide in discussion with one another – whether wrong or right – this is not the concern for me…learning is.