John 17: 21a May they all be one, as You, Father, are in Me and I am in You. (HCSB)
Inventory of Doctrines
I need your help!
For our next series of articles I would like to discuss each of the fundamental practices of the Restoration Movement churches from the perspective of CENI
. (things like baptism, the Lord's supper, church governance, acts of worship, and anything else of that nature which we would expect to find in an "orthodox" Restoration Movement congregation). I want to discover the hermeneutic foundation for each practice. Did the Restoration Movement forefathers establish the practice based on an explicit command in scripture? Or was it recognized from a biblical example, or from a necessary inference? Any historical information about how the practice came to be recognized would be helpful.
At the same time, I want to examine each of these practices based on its nearness to the core of Christianity. Is it of crucial importance to salvation, or is it a peripheral matter, or something in-between? This will be a judgment matter, but I want to make an honest attempt to categorize the practices in this way. There may be a temptation to say every teaching is crucial to salvation. Or there may be an opposite temptation to claim that almost nothing is essential to salvation. Both extremes are mistaken IMO. The circle is not so narrow that only those with perfect understanding and practice will be saved. Nor is it so broad that everyone will be saved regardless of the severity of their errors.
I am interested to see which practices are crucial, and how well supported they are hermeneutically speaking. An understanding of this may be very helpful in advancing the cause of unity
To proceed, we need an inventory of these practices. And we need to collect the scriptural basis for each. I'd like get the biblical evidence as it would be argued by proponents of the practice.
This is where I need your help.
I'm looking for information in the following format:
1. Practice: Worship every SundayPlease use a separate comment for each practice. If there is more than one line of reasoning, you could repeat points 2, 3, and 4 for each line of reasoning.
2. Biblical basis: Acts 20:7, 1 Cor 16:2
3. Historical basis: Justin Martyr, Apology 1, Chapter LXVII
4. Fifty words or less of explanation: The church in Troas met on the first day of the week to break bread, and Paul preached. The Corinthian church took up a collection on the first day of every week. And the historical account of Justin Martyr indicates that the practice of the church was to assemble on the first day of every week for worship. So we have two scriptural examples and historical confirmation of the practice.
Right now we are in brainstorming mode, just collecting an inventory of these practices. Then we'll organize the data and attempt to analyze each in more detail. Hopefully this exercise will give us more insight regarding the way toward unity.
May God give us success in our effort!