Is The Clergy/Laity Distinction Biblical?

One of the few things that most religions have in common is a clergy/laity distinction. The clergy are people who have been appointed (ordained) to perform religious duties, rituals and tasks which the common people (lay people, laity) aren’t considered qualified to do or aren’t expected to do. Some terms that are commonly used to refer to clergy within Christianity are priest, reverend, minister, preacher, bishop, pastor, father, etc. In short, clergy are the people behind the pulpit and laity are the people in the pews.

Opposite views of clergy and laity

Although in the minority, there are some movements and denominations that have rejected the notion of a clergy/laity distinction. While this is a more biblical approach, it isn’t without its problems. The emphasis upon equality among believers may result in people serving in a capacity they are not gifted for. Sometimes this is allowed to go unchecked because of a reluctance to question someone’s “right” to serve. In reality, it isn’t about rights, but about finding a way for them to apply their gift in the correct role.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Blog

The 7th Day Is Not The Real Sabbath

The seventh day of the week (Saturday) was the day God gave to the ancient Israelites as a day of ceasing from their labor (Ex 16). To a nation of former slaves who had just left Egypt, a day off of work must have been both a welcome and strange idea.

The word Sabbath (שַׁבָּת shabbath, H7676) means to cease, but most people think it means rest. Rest is certainly part of the Sabbath, but rest is the result of ceasing from labor.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Blog

What is the Gospel?

Christians use the word “gospel” a great deal in conversations. It’s not an everyday sort of word and therefore we may not intuitively know what it means. The English word gospel is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word “godspell.” It is a compound word from god (good) and spell (news). Over time, the spelling morphed into the modern word gospel. This is the English word that scholars have chosen to translate the Greek word euaggelion (εὐαγγέλιον, Strongs G2098) which simply means “good news.”

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Blog

Bible Enigmas

The Bible sometimes leaves us with as many questions as answers. Some passages make statements that are not clearly explained and arouses our curiosity. Let’s look at a couple of very well known stories in Genesis.

Talking snake

With little in the way introduction, a talking snake appears in Genesis 3 who successfully deceives Eve. We aren’t told how he got into the garden. There is no mention of how bizarre it is that a snake can speak. We aren’t explicitly told who the snake is. In fact, nowhere else in the entire Bible are we clearly told who the snake was. There are hints that it was Satan (there is little doubt it could have been anyone else), but nowhere is the snake’s identity spelled out for us. Why would the text leave us hanging like this?

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Blog

What is Church?

When we think of church we often form a mental image of an expensive, elaborate building, or we may associate it with some kind of organization or institution. Would you be surprised to learn it is neither of these?

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Blog