Sunday, May 9, 2010
Paul advises his protege Timothy to not bother with controversy.
Read 2Timothy 2:23.
Ha! You might as well tell the sun not to shine. It just can't be avoided. Think of Jesus. The immediate cause of his death was controversy: the sabbath, the Temple, dietary laws, balance of power, and who is THE authority. Think of the early Church. Isn't controversy one of the reasons for councils? The Holy Fathers argued in Nicea over "same as" and "similar to". History goes on.
I'm not sure why Paul told Timothy to avoid controversy. Maybe Timothy wasn't learned enough to defend the faith. Maybe, Timothy's assignment was to "introduce," not convert. Who knows? I do know that the Church grows in, and with, and in spite of controversy. The history of the Church shows that what was important at one time, is trivial in another. The Church grows, defines itself more clearly, in hard times.
Read 1Cor. 11:19.
Most people don't like to argue. People get hurt. Rigid Conservatism can come down hard. Sometime it seems that "orthodoxy" is just a fancy word to snap like a whip on the other person. But the Church thrives. It survives. And not always as its orthodox defenders think it should. Yesterday's heresies sometimes are the current orthodoxy.
We wouldn't be here if the Circumcision Party had won the election.
The Spirit moves where it wills. Don't be upset by controversy. Trust in God.