- Pastor Randy
Oops, that was bad.
Ever forget a key ingredient when baking? Have you ever put a piece a machinery back together and had pieces left over? Cake without sugar tastes bleah and a machine that produces a screeching sound is one to avoid.
My faith has to be formed by key ingredients too and the most important one is the Holy Bible. The scriptures inform me of God's nature and I better understand God through these ancient but relevant texts. John Wesley believed scripture was foundational to faith and our traditions in the church, experience with God, and the ability to reason were also essential ingredients.
Lately, there has been a gentle swing toward emotional faith not built on reason but more upon how one might feel about a particular situation. Leaving behind a biblical perspective for our human point of view and feelings tends to create faith that is built upon weak theology and in some cases no theology at all.
If I bring my emotional perspective to a situation separated from scriptural foundations and healthy reasoning, then I have derailed my understanding of what God might be trying to communicate.
To guard my faith from my emotions, I utilize the "CIA" approach to scripture. Dr. David Dorsey would say, "Clarify what the author was saying in the text. Investigate the audience, location, timeframe, events of the time, and what God was doing then Apply the texts to our own situation and see how God is asking us to live into these passages. "CIA" approach involves some research on our part.
Using this model of biblical exploration keeps my emotional perspective tempered but not eliminated. My faith will be made complete through a thoughtful application of tradition, experience, and reason of God's Word.