Summary: It simply amazes me how much ridiculously unimportant stuff gets in the way of the churches fulfilling “The Great Commission”. If sin in our lives isn’t enough of a stumbling block, the politics and some of the outdated traditions of some of the churches
Sermon Title: No matter how you slice it - it is still Bologna
Text: I Timothy 2:9-15
Date: August 10, 2003
Introduction of Scripture:
For those of you that have been following the direction that this series on Paul’s first letter to Timothy has been taken you will know that this morning we will touch on a very sensitive topic. Let me don some protective gear so that I might proceed.
This is one of many Scriptures that some in the church use to say that women shouldn’t teach or preach or have any kind of authority in the church. These same people say it dictates how they should dress and seemingly places the blame on the women for all that has transpired since that fateful moment in the Garden of Eden. If we simply read this morning’s Scripture without giving it much thought, and a lack of thinking seems to be a growing problem in the church of today, we might come to the conclusion that women should remain quiet. Women have no place in a teaching and especially a preaching position in the church. They in no way should be in charge of men in any church situation if not in all situations. It seems that this dictates that women do not know how to dress properly and that it is their fault that mankind exists in a state of fallen ness. The only thing I can say in regards to those that feel that way is HOGWASH! WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE! For reasons that should be obvious by the time that we end this study, I have given this message the title, “No matter how you slice it – it is still Bologna!”
It simply amazes me how much ridiculously unimportant stuff gets in the way of the churches fulfilling “The Great Commission”. If sin in our lives isn’t enough of a stumbling block, the politics and some of the outdated traditions of some of the churches make it almost impossible for a “sincere of heart” person to repent and walk with the Lord.
Let us stand for the reading of God’s Word!
Scripture Reading: I Timothy 2:9-15
9 Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments, 10 but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness. 11 A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. 12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. 15 But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.
For those that are lost and seeking a relationship with Jesus Christ in this time that we are living in, they are at the greatest of disadvantage. They live in a world that calls them weak if they seek something beyond themselves but at the same time, there are many churches that have set up so many hoops for them to jump through that they oftentimes get discouraged and say, “What is the use?” We are not talking about Biblical hoops, we are talking about man-invented hoops that we have put in place to augment where God’s running of the church has fallen short. These people were in ample supply during Jesus’ earthly ministry and they have cropped up again in the form of the new Pharisees.
These self-appointed rule makers have placed supposed restrictions in the paths of new seekers of Jesus and justify these additions as being Biblically based. No matter how you slice it – it is still Bologna! They are giving their self-appointed rules a Biblical basis that is based on a shallow understanding of God’s Word that is nothing short of Biblical ignorance. They may dress the part and they may act the part of Christian, however, Looks can be deceiving! I believe the phrase white-washed sepulchers is the proper label.
On the other hand, there are some in the body of Christ that have taken a stand that is quite the opposite. They have thrown any kind of respectful apparel out the window. They are tattooed, they are pierced, they openly participate in some activities that are clearaly spoken against in God’s Word, and they give the reason for these infractions as an attempt to reach those in the world that the traditional church would never reach out to. No matter how you slice it – it is still bologna! If we look like the world, if we dress like the world, and if we act like the world – then surprise-surprise-surprise, we are the world. We are no different then those that we are supposedly seeking to bring into the kingdom and the very same worldly eternity will await us as well.