Tradition: A Good Idea for the Unprogressive!

Mt family in Christ,

I am not an expert in patterns of Jewish worship, but as I read through Luke 4 it appears to me that as long as His actions and words seemed to be compatible with established synagogue conventions, Jesus was accepted as a bona fide Rabbi taking part in routine proceedings. But, by v. 28 it had become clear to those gathered therein that the Messiah was veering away from traditional conventions, and so the worshippers began to take a dislike to this Person who dared to mess with their expectations.

My friends, because of my belief that the Eucharist should be received regularly I attend a place of worship where a long-established form of worship is cherished. But the time which I spent in a Pentecostal community [1] also leads me to admit that the Christian community of which I am a member seems to have an unhealthy emphasis on human tradition. Although I like it, as do other more long-standing members, I feel that misplaced devotion to this (for the most part) inflexible pattern of worship can only continue at the expense of church growth!

Every church has one and the same message of divine LOVE to communicate to society (e.g. 1 Jn 4). That is, in an act of supreme LOVE the Father sent His Son into the world, and now gives us the Holy Spirit so that we may be empowered in order that, through our Christ-Like actions and speeches, our confirmation of that LOVE may break through the prevailing social conditions of any given generation or culture:

My fear is that whatever proved to be an effective form of communication yesterday may not have the same force today (cf. Mt 23:2-32). Even if it does, can you claim with any certainty that it will have the same power tomorrow? I have absolutely no doubt that God will be praised for evermore. But have no illusion: God has no need of human traditions (Mk 7); compared to LOVE, traditions are useless!

God bless you.


[1] Plus blogs, certain Youtube videos, contemporary Christian music etc.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s