Should Orthodoxy be Questionable?

If we are honest with ourselves we must admit that our theological and doctrinal stance has evolved with the passing of time. Without mentioning the obvious, many things we were taught are no longer a part of our belief system. Why is that? Because we have gained a fuller understanding of what we had been taught as truth and have concluded that the information supplied to us, was either misguided or false. This does not mean that scriptural theology or doctrine is wrong, but that in some instances man's understanding of scripture is misguided or wrong.

Because we are human, the relational path we travel with Jesus is also a spiritual journey of truth seeking. By getting to know God in a richer way through viewing Him through Jesus, we are made aware that what we accepted as “truths” in the past were not truths at all or at the least, were misguided truths.

The “truths” that we believe as a “unified group”. 
Shared beliefs unify groups , but also segregate them from other groups who have opposing beliefs. --> Once we are free from the phobia of what other people think of us we begin to develop our sense of understanding truth for ourselves. Making sense of truth is subjected to more being more thoughtful, more intentional in contextual study, and keeping an open-mind along our relational journey with Jesus that allows for a fuller understanding of revelatory truth.

Right about now you may be asking…but what about the orthodox beliefs of the “Christian faith?” Surly there is not room for debating our orthodox doctrines as not being fully understood, and certainly there is no room to entertain them as not being true…or is there?

Living in the phobia of always being concerned about what other people think about us robs us of the freedom to ask freely questions that are viewed as contradictory to what is accepted as “orthodoxy” to the point that our “spiritual condition” becomes suspicious and we are put on the scrutiny list by said group.

If our questioning leads to conclusion that are outside of the “orthodox box”, we may be scoffed at, ridiculed, being classed as heretical even to the point of being cultish  Such labels reinforce our phobia of being thought of as a strife breeder. This tactic is used to prevent people the freedom of being able to think for themselves or from engaging in meaningful dialogue of disagreement. Thus, orthodoxy is protected from scrutiny because we don’t dare question its authenticity.

Merriam Webster defines orthodox as, “conforming to established doctrine especially in religion.” “Relating to, or constituting any of various conservative religious or political groups: as eastern orthodox.” It then tells us its origin, “Middle English orthodoxe, from Middle French or Late Latin; Middle French orthodoxe, from Late Latin orthodoxus, from Late Greek orthodoxos, from Greek orth- + doxa opinion.” Get this, “First Known Use: 15th century.

If we maintain that orthodoxy should be imposed on people because it “always has been truth”m that is nothing but a myth, meaning some of its doctrines did not originate with the “apostles” or “God” nor in scripture antiquity.

Orthodox proponents maintain that its supposed truths and the doctrines associated with the truths have been consensually and peacefully agreed upon by “Christians” throughout the centuries and those who oppose “orthodox truth” or who question said truths are labeled as liberal or even heretical.

While orthodoxy can have its place in preserving certain beliefs, some of the supposed truth in religious orthodoxy has often been established out of fear to control people as a way to protect one’s belief and preserve the structure when scrutinized by valid ideas and questions.

There is a time and place to defend what we hold to as “truth”. But to hold that “truth” up beyond honest questioning so as to squash disagreement with it, is prone to being cultish. But even when allowing questioning and disagreement, it should be done in a loving and understanding manner and by maintaining an open mind to the possibility that our orthodoxy may be what is wrong.

Because a majority of people may agree with orthodoxy does not meant it is always right. If there was no questioning and disagreement with orthodoxy there would be no protestant groups today!

There is nothing to lose by being open-minded when it comes to orthodoxy, in fact it may be enlightening and life-transforming.


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