Embracing The Wideness (eBook)
The Shared Convictions Of The United Methodist Church
de Jr. Kenneth H. Carter
Sobre o livro
Embracing the Wideness contrasts a generous orthodoxy with theculture wars that seek to drive a wedge between Christians with deepfaith convictions. A generous orthodoxy is possible for The UnitedMethodist Church because scripture supports both a confessing movementand a reconciling movement.
In addition to our divergent understandings of holiness in The UnitedMethodist Church, we apparently have two distinct conceptions of church.These two conceptions of church present in American Methodism grew fromseeds planted in the earliest practice of British Methodism:
1. A separatist church, which views holiness as a calling thatseparates us from the world—“come out from among them and be separated”(2 Corinthians 6:17). Here holiness is a quality that distinguishesChristians from the world.
2. An activist church, which understands holiness as a movement forchange in an unjust world. The boundaries between church and society areblurred, with the “wheat and tares” growing together (Matthew 13) untilGod’s final judgment.
At times, a denomination is able to hold these two conceptions of churchin tension. And at times, as in recent experiences of AmericanChristianity, there is fragmentation and division. The division mayfinally be the result of clearly articulated values that are notcompatible. And the division may also be the result of how leaders doharm to each other.
What great things could be accomplished if we rediscovered orthodoxy inservice of the healing, instead of dividing, of our bodies—our churches!Such a generous orthodoxy would help us not to become immersed in theemotional processes that pit people against each other. Such a generousorthodoxy would keep us from becoming stuck in cycles of harmfulcollusion and escalating conflict. Such a generous orthodoxy would knowthat the source of our capacity to be healed of our schisms is a miraclebeyond our human power or goodness or intelligence.