Friday, July 15, 2011


2 Corinthians 6:12 You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted in your own affections.

12 οὐ στενοχωρεῖσθε ἐν ἡμῖν, στενοχωρεῖσθε δὲ ἐν τοῖς σπλάγχνοις ὑμῶν·

Some exegetes make a big deal of the word σπλάγχνοις. It does technically refer to ones "guts" or "bowels." This was the word that was used to describe the heart of a person. It describes what makes a person tick, if you will. Paul describes how they were στενοχωρεῖσθε or "were restricted" in their feelings.

As we seek to plant a new fellowship within the body of Christ we are looking at various church constitutions. I read one that is based on the template provided by the Christian Law Association. This appears to be a favorite of those who are of the more Independent Baptist persuasion. I find the tone fascinating. Basically, it assumes that we want nothing more than to fall headlong into sin and, therefore, we must set up fences far enough away from sin so that we won't even get close to the sin.

That's all well and good, but what it fails to account for is the affections of the heart. It assumes that we will feel no affection for God. In fact, it doesn't even address that we should. All this does is then create a bunch of Pharisees who are good at being good. It doesn't deal with the matter of the heart.

We all need rules or else the New Testament would not have any. However, obedience starts with the heart. It begins with a heart that desires more of God. And as we experience more of Him then the temptations of the world begin to fade away. We are not as tempted to sin when we are satisfied in Christ. So rather than focusing on rules, let's instead focus on our σπλάγχνοις.

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