[thechat] non-denominational: word trap? (was: Mythology was comics)

Joe Crawford jcrawford at avencom.com
Wed May 23 18:59:36 CDT 2001

deke wrote:
> But those who describe themselves as "non-denominational christians"
> say "if you don't agree with what we believe, you're not a christian."
> That's baloney. If you are a group of people with an agreed-upon set
> of beliefs, then you are a denomination. If you don't have a set of
> beliefs, then you are a secular organization. Most of them worship
> Paul's teachings rather than those of Jesus, his brother James,
> and the home church in Jerusalem; but that's OK. They are perfectly
> free to follow Paul. What I object to is that the so-called
> "non-denominational christians", in defining themselves as the *only*
> christians, are hardly exhibiting christian behavior.

I think we've hit a word trap here - nondenominational does not - at
least to me - imply judgemental. It reads to me more like "unaffiliated"
- and "open" to me. And in *my* experience, many/most of the folks who
fall into "non-organized faith" Christians are *very* open to other
Christians of whatever stripe - be you Baptist, Catholic, Episcopalian -
or from Pastor Joe Schmoe's congregation a few miles over.

My point is that describing "non-denominational christians" as
monolithic in terms of how they see other people. Some may indeed be as
intolerant as you say, but in my travels a greater swatch are pretty
cool and - "ecumenical" - is that the word?

But maybe my view is warped by being in California.

	- joe <http://artlung.com/>

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