The radio preacher said that we should be tolerant of each other's doctrines, hymns, worship styles, etc. He said that he had been judgmental toward other denominations and said that God was convicting him of that lately. He urged his listeners to visit other denominations once a month. I wondered what would happen if he visited my church. If this local pastor had visited my church the very next day, he would have experienced the following:
- corporate confession of sins;
- pastor using the office of the keys to pronounce our sins forgiven;
- an infant baptism, our pastor's first grandchild, with tears of joy streaming down the young parents' faces in gratitude to a loving God who can create a seed of faith in their newborn child and our pastor choking back his own tears of gratitude as he poured the saving water on the child;
- proclamation by our pastor with a huge smile on his face, "We have approached the throne of grace, now our God approaches us in His Word;
- sermon reminding us of our own sinful state and the loving God who gave us Jesus Christ as a substitutionary sacrifice so that we may enter heaven.
- gentle and loving admonition to congregants of the biblical teaching on partaking in holy communion without full agreement that Jesus' body and blood are truly present.
What would that radio pastor think of my church? Would he walk away critical of us for not allowing his to take communion or baptizing a newborn baby into faith? I looked up his church and radio ministry on the internet when I got home. I know of his denomination, was a member for a few years and know that they reject that God creates faith in infants at baptism and reject Christ's real presence at communion. Certainly, we share much in common, namely that faith in Jesus as the savior is the only way to eternal life in heaven with God. I do agree that disagreement over what scriptures teach does hinder reaching the world with the gospel message; I also believe that agreeing to disagree is harmful...to me, to all Christians and to the non-believer. Christians must consider the scriptures together and agree on what they teach. That is true unity.