Should We be Deep or Simple?
Today I was listening to a message about parenting from Pastor Rod Plummer at Jesus Lifehouse Church in Tokyo (One of the fastest growing churches in Japan). I was really enjoying his positive (as usual), upbeat, joyful message when he said something that made me stop and think a little more deeply.
Basically Rod said, "We are not going to be a church that gives deep messages."
According to him, most Christians are not living out what they already know, and so to pile up more head knowledge would only lead to pride, not to joyful obedience and love.
That made me stop and think about a few things:
1. Knowledge has a tendency to puff up one's pride. (1 Cor. 8:1)
2. However, God inspired hard texts - even Peter thought so.
(2 Peter 3:15-16)
3. God wants us to know his Word well.
4. Knowing God more can lead to loving God more.
5. Without truth, we cannot truly love.
After praying about this, I thought about John Piper's message entitled, "Why God Inspired Hard Texts?" This helped me gain a good perspective on whether one should be deep or simple:
"That God is love unleashes the impulse of simplicity, and that God is God unleashes the impulse of complexity.
That God is love unleashes the impulse of accessibility, and that God is God unleashes the impulse of profundity.
That God is love encourages a focus on the basics, and that God is God encourages a focus on comprehensiveness. One says, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved" (Acts 16:31). The other says, "I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God" (Acts 20:27).
That God is love impels us to be sure that the truth gets to all people, and that God is God impels us to be sure that what gets to all people is the truth.
That God is love unleashes the impulse toward fellowship, and that God is God unleashes the impulse toward scholarship.
That God is love tends to create extroverts and evangelists, and that God is God tends to create introverts and mystics.
That God is love helps foster a folk ethos, and that God is God helps foster fine ethos. One ethos revels in the intimacy of God and sings softly...
And the other ethos revels in the transcendent majesty of God and sings with profound exultation."
Read the whole thing here. If you don't have much time, at least read the conclusion. It is well worth your time.