Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Where does your theology come from?

Where does your theology come from?

                In some Christian circles, the word "theology" has gotten a bad name. Even as other people are being drawn into liturgy and traditions of man, in these circles, "theology" has taken on a context so negative you'd think that theological discussion was the work of the enemy. What is so evil about theology? Why does it strike fear in the hearts of so many pastors and parishioners? First, let's look at what the word even means. 

Theology: The study of the nature of God and religious belief.

                OK, well, that seems fairly innocuous. Why in the world would so many people demonize and shy away from the study of (or discussion about) the nature of God? Doesn't the Word itself tell us many times over to earnestly seek after Him and to know Him better? Doesn't that same Word also talk about meeting together, and iron sharpening iron? Clearly, we are to seek to know Him better, part of that process being discussing what we're learning with one another and even challenging one another's ideas, in order to get to the Truth. 

                So that begs the question, with so many different theologies out there, where do they come from? Those claiming that God accepts homosexuals just as they are and does not require them to leave that lifestyle to become members (or even pastors) clearly have a different theology than those who claim that God loves (and we are to love) homosexuals, but that their lifestyle is a sin which must be dealt with before accepting them into membership, much less leadership. The former happily celebrate same-sex unions in their church buildings, while the latter feel that practice is heresy. Many of the first group even feel strongly enough about this issue that they feel the government should step in and remove churches and businesses from the latter, and would gladly, proudly, turn them in for this purpose. 

                How diametrically opposed can one group (the church) be? And this is just one issue! There is only one God, there is only one Truth, so how can each of these groups be right? They can't, plain and simple. God has one opinion on this issue and someone, maybe everyone, is on the wrong side of it. Knowing how strongly both sides feel on this issue, isn't it ignorant not to assume that God has just as strong an opinion? He loves both sides, He loves the homosexuals in the center of the debate. Knowing that He loves and does not wish that any be lost and go to hell, doesn't it behoove EVERYONE in the discussion to let their own opinions go, fall on their faces and pray, and seek His Word for His final say on the issue? This way, if the former group is wrong, they, and their homosexual church members and leaders can repent and be saved. If the latter group is wrong, they can do the same. 

                So, if someone's wrong (and someone is), where did that wrong theology, that misunderstanding of God, come from? Did they misread the Bible? Did they just make it up for themselves? Did someone else intentionally mislead them? Looking at issues (and denominations) under this particular light, it poignantly drives home the point that we need to take serious stock of our theologies and make sure that we're right with God. The church today is made up of factions, most of which simply must be wrong about who God is if there is but one Truth, all working towards their own goals, not God's, and not together in anything remotely resembling unity. This is not His perfect design for the church. God did not curse the church, His Body, with the same division and confusion with which He cursed the world after the tower of Babel. 

                That's an important point to remember here...There is only one God, there is only one Truth. With all the (mostly disingenuous) talk out there about "unity" and "just getting along" and "banding together despite our differences", seeking after God's true character with all your heart has become something of a divisive pursuit. But when seeking after Him with our whole heart, one must necessarily come to a place where you ask; where did all these different ideas, denominations, traditions and theologies come from? Why don't we actively seek to find true unity by setting aside all these misconceptions and come together to really seek His one Truth? How much more, better, real unity could we find then? How does God feel about this? Wouldn't He seek to reveal Himself more clearly to a body who was willing to seek Him in this way? 

                I humbly submit that this is precisely what He has been desiring to do for some time now. So let us respond to Him in the only appropriate way we can. Let us come together, as one Body, globally, and fall on our faces, repent of our division, search our His Word for His view on the issues which divide us, and begin walking together in real unity, with one accepted view of who God is, what He wants, how we are to serve Him...One Theology, that He may receive the glory which only He deserves. 

In Service of the King,

~Michael "Blue" Erdmier

Friday, January 2, 2015

2015 Update


I pray you all had a Merry Christmas and are having a very Happy New Year!

As we move forward into 2015, I thought I would take a few moments to update you on all that is going on. There are several new Facebook Pages and Groups, as well as a few new YouTube Channels to update you on, in addition to the plans for MOSAIC Five-Fold Fellowship.


First, if you are not already aware, in several weeks we will be launching a parachurch organization called "MOSAIC Five-Fold Fellowship" (or just "MOSAIC" for short). MOSAIC is being founded on something the Lord has been stirring in my heart for many years now. In short, it is;

* A calling back to the 5-Fold Ministry model given in the New Testament and utilized by the early church (eventually with full-time minsters in the 5 offices).
* A calling to 24/7 Prayer and Worship in a dedicated Sanctuary, open to the community.
* A calling to true Unity in the church, based not on an "Ecumenical" blind acceptance of all theologies and denominations as equally correct, but on a driving desire to seek out the one Truth of God, together.
* A calling to the "Free Church" model; a departure from the 501(c)(3) format so many churches have fallen into in this country.

As we plan to launch, we may be meeting at our home in Morton, IL for a time, but will be seeking a more neutral location and planning a permanent home as we grow. (This includes the previous plans for a "Morton Community House of Prayer" as part of its format so that ministry will be moving forward as part of this one.)
More information can be found at the temporary Website here, the Facebook Group, here, and the YouTube Channel, here. Both the Facebook Groups and YouTube Channel are still being developed and a permanent Website is forthcoming.


Next, the "Browncoat Society for the Continuation of the "Firefly" Television Series" Facebook Group has over 4,700 members now! We continue to grow by leaps and bounds, with more than a dozen new members almost daily! I've been seeing more a more Firefly/Serenity gear around as well, including "Firefly The Game", "Firefly Online Game", "Clue; Firefly Collector's Edition" and "Yahtzee; Firefly Collector's Edition", complete with a model Serenity for the dice cup! There's even a new "Serenity Film-Scale Artisan Replica" available for $7,500 from Qmx and Funko ReAction and Pop! figures! It's an exciting time to be a Browncoat, for sure!

This spurred me on to making a followup group; "Black Gun Browncoats" (Facebook Group here YouTube Channel here) for Firefly fans who also enjoy shooting sports. This page is featuring my own personal AR15 build as well. 
Additionally, my interest in RC aircraft, particularly multirotors and FPV (first-person view) gear led to the creation of the YouTube Channel "Firefly FPV Flight Deck" (found here). This will follow my own quadcopters including my new Blade 200QX ("The CTS Hoban Washburne"), and a future FPV build, possibly based on a 200QX with a Razor or Phoenix carbon fiber frame.


As some of you may know, I have been suffering with a variety of physical issues for many years now. Several Xrays, MRIs and Dr. visits have yielded no real answers. I have several bulging discs in my back, at least 1 full herniated disc, 2 of the discs in my neck are fused (not surgically), I've had several dysplastic nevus (precancerous moles) removed, have some arthritis (but not as much as we expected) and am in nearly constant pain. There are days it's hard to walk and nights I sleep downstairs because I can't get up the stairs. My eldest daughter found a disorder which could explain a lot of it, and I plan to have a DNA test done this Spring to find out if that could be it. Unfortunately there is no medical cure, but at least it could be identified, properly treated, and maybe I could get on some kind of disability or something to help provide for my family. I've tried a couple different jobs, but have been unable to find work I can physically do. 

One job I was always good at and really enjoyed was selling cars. At least, when I was able to treat clients the way I wanted to and was able to sell inventory I had interest in. Although I did well with either specialty cars or "college student" cars, I never did well selling new, current, domestic offerings to average buyers. One side of the spectrum or the other was better for me, never middle-of-the-road. 

This got me looking for a niche market to specialize in and it came pretty quickly. All the cars I've been interested in over the years, many of them today are inexpensive, or experiencing a resurgence of interest, opening a new market for restorations, resto-mods and partial restorations (basically just repair, tune, clean and flip). One car that fits this category well is the Porsche 928. Now, the late S4/GT/GTS are all out of my range, but the early cars are usually doable, and they need more repair anyway. After brief research, I decided I would specialize mostly in 1985-86 cars. These were the early body style, but with the "S" trim, and these 2 years alone had the DOHC engine prior to the aero refresh in 1987. So, come March or early April, I'll be on the hunt for an '85-'86 Porsche 928S in clean, running condition for around $8K (or preferably under). Let me know if you hear of one that is available. Illinois has some specific rules on private sellers, but maybe this could be developed into a small business before I hit those limits.


Finally, my family and I are currently in a period of transition. We are in the process of leaving the church I grew up in and are looking into a few other local congregations to be involved in. There is a local "House of Prayer", but they are not a church (and don't wish to be). We will include them as part of whatever we end up doing, but are looking into other congregations for membership. There is one in particular we have had dealings with in the past which we are strongly leaning towards at this time. 

Without going into a lot of detail or naming names, the only reason I would ever consider leaving a church (other than relocation or a call to ministry elsewhere) is due to a serious conflict of theology. As I make ever effort to be willing to be proven wrong, to base my personal theology as much as possible on the Word alone and to reject "religion" and doctrinal teachings of man without Biblical foundation, for me this means that church leadership must be doing something outside the scope of the Word for me to have an issue with it. And that's exactly what we've run into. 

A Pastor and Elder of the church, from an open microphone at the pulpit at a prayer meeting, was praying for the Middle East. In this prayer, he prayed "that 'Isa would be fully revealed to the Muslim people". Now, 'Isa is a character who appears in Muslim texts as a "version" of the Jesus of the Bible, so the name is used by those who know (but not its full meaning) in an attempt to reach out to Muslims, or to sound learned on the subject of Islam. 

Unfortunately, 'Isa was not the name used for Jesus by Christian Arabs before the invention of Islam. They used (depending on locale) variations of the Hebrew "Yeshua", such as "Yasou". Additionally, 'Isa has his own narrative, distinct from the Jesus of the Bible. 'Isa was not the son of God ("Allah" has no sons), was born in Palestine, not Nazareth, to Merideth (Islam's version of Moses' sister), not to Mary, did not die on the cross and so did not provide salvation to man (in Islam man does not require salvation) but was taken up into heaven and was replaced on the cross by Judas Iscariot. Furthermore, he will return one day as Caliph over an Islamic world, will break the cross of Jerusalem and put all Christians, Jews and other non-Muslims to the sword, have children and die after 40 years. He is NOT Jesus of the Bible but is in fact the very spirit of the antichrist.

I approached leadership with a mountain of reference material, as I had researched this topic heavily when Dr. Rick Warren ("The Purpose Driven Life") use the name 'Isa interchangeably with Jesus in his prayer at Obama's first inauguration. Needless to say, this did not go as anticipated and after multiple attempts, many emails and a couple meetings, they refused to hear the truth.

So it is with great pain and suffering that we remove ourselves from ministry and leadership, leave that church and begin looking for another church body to become part of. Be praying for us as we move forward into whatever God has for us in the coming year(s), and as we move forward with MOSAIC and other interests.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

In Service of the King,

~Michael "Blue" Erdmier