Monday, July 3, 2017

Evangelical Schism

I have long been concerned about the "schism" between "church christians" and "real" christians, i.e. those who have a "personal relationship with Jesus" and those who don't, a schism fomented by evangelicalism, with its non-covenantal preaching, but rather a conversionary preaching, a "come-to-jesus" ethos rather than that of God coming to humanity, a reflection of what I call the Corinthian Complex assailed by the Apostle Paul, wherein the use of tongues gave some in the Corinthian Church a sense of superiority over other "second-class" christians who lacked, or didn't seek, the gift of tongues.

Vol. 3.4.601-2, Barth's discussion of "the schism" fomented by monasticism, a schism blessed by the church, wherein it was the monk who was truly called, truly a christian, the one who truly puts on Christ, sheds light upon the evangelical schism, based upon much of the same dynamic as that of the Middle Ages.

As Barth puts it: "What were and are all external schisms compared with this schism which the Church allowed, willed, blessed and finally achieved within itself by making and teaching and institutionalising the distinction between first-class Christians who have a "klasis" [calling] and second-class Christians who have not" [p.602].

At least in the Middle Ages, "other" christians were at least lauded for their work, which was to enable and sustain the monastics, who, with Christ and the Saints, were working out the salvation of the world.

Whereas in the evangelical world of America, there are no "other" kinds of christians, only pretenders, only the deceived, only a "churchy" kind of christian who is no christian at all, and, thus, bound for hell.

A schism, indeed.