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After Suffered A Rapid Decline, Doctrine Is Dead — Satire

This just in from Reuters News Service: Doctrine died today. The news of Doctrine’s demise, while tragic, was not entirely unanticipated. It had been battling a terminal illness for many years. Doctrine’s storied history is well known. From its powerful birth in the Apostolic Age; to its rapid rise to a place of centrality in the Christian life during the early centuries of the Church; to its serious injuries and repression throughout the Medieval Period; to its incurable diagnosis during the Enlightenment; and finally its death in this present pluralistic age.

For a brief time, hope of Doctrine’s recovery re-emerged during the early 20th Century, as Inerrantists and Biblicists put forth aggressive treatment programs that appeared to cause Doctrine’s disease to enter remission. Such hopes turned out to be premature, however.  With the onset of postmodern thinking, Doctrine suffered a rapid decline and finally breathed its last breath just this morning.

Reaction to this news has been swift and fairly consistent. One leading evangelical leader wrote, “While we are saddened by this news, we are glad to know that Doctrine’s suffering is finally over. Now we can get on with more important matters like relationship-building and loving our brothers.” Another pastor commented, “Our hearts go out to all of those who loved Doctrine and stood by it until the bitter end. We pray that they will gain closure and move forward quickly. We invite them to stop living in the past. Come join the rest of us in mainstream evangelical Christianity as we seek to change the world through love, peace, and goodwill, rather than the divisiveness of creedalism.”

Not all Christian leaders have been as diplomatic in their comments. One highly influential Christian personality quipped, “It’s about time! Doctrine has had a stranglehold on the thoughts and minds of Christians for far too long. Good riddance!”

The general sentiment across Christendom seems to be one of relief. The climate within Christianity has been characterized by a disdain for doctrinal standards for quite some time. Those who draw lines of theological distinction are perceived as unloving, even hateful or mean, while those who draw circles of inclusion are viewed as more progressive, loving and open-minded.  Anyone who claims his view is “right” based upon Biblical Doctrine is charged with trying to force his view on someone else. Indeed, the labels “right” and “wrong” have been replaced in favor of less dogmatic phrases like “opinion” and “bias.”

Those from the “Can’t-We-All-Just-Get-Along” political action committee within evangelicalism already have issued a statement celebrating the dawning of a new day: “Finally, once and for all, we can put an end to the judgmentalism, hatred, and arrogance of Doctrine’s disciples who insist that right belief is important. Such an archaic philosophy has been on life support for many years and we are heartened that we can now move definitively beyond it to happier days of fellowship, joy, affirmation, and acceptance of all people regardless of their particular beliefs.”

One final addendum to this story. An obscure and little-known Christian leader, who goes only by his first name “Paul,” has cautioned that such celebratory response to the death of Doctrine is typical of those whose “consciences have been seared with a hot iron” and whose “itching ears” desire to hear only what makes them feel good. He goes on to point out that Doctrine is necessary for proper behavior and that Christians would do well to “hold fast to sound Doctrine for in so doing it will protect and preserve all who follow it.”

It remains to be seen what effect the laying to rest of Doctrine will have on Christianity, but if this “Paul” is correct, straws will blow even more erratically as the blustery winds pick up.

1 Timothy 4:16 KJV – “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.”

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This just in from Reuters News Service: Doctrine died today. The news of Doctrine’s demise, while tragic, was not entirely unanticipated. It had been battling a terminal illness for many years. Doctrine’s storied history is well known. From its powerful birth in the Apostolic Age; to its rapid rise to a place of centrality in the Christian life during the early centuries of the Church; to its serious injuries and repression throughout the Medieval Period; to its incurable diagnosis during the Enlightenment; and finally its death in this present pluralistic age.

For a brief time, hope of Doctrine’s recovery re-emerged during the early 20th Century, as Inerrantists and Biblicists put forth aggressive treatment programs that appeared to cause Doctrine’s disease to enter remission. Such hopes turned out to be premature, however.  With the onset of postmodern thinking, Doctrine suffered a rapid decline and finally breathed its last breath just this morning.

Reaction to this news has been swift and fairly consistent. One leading evangelical leader wrote, “While we are saddened by this news, we are glad to know that Doctrine’s suffering is finally over. Now we can get on with more important matters l