Thursdays are for Theology - Unity in Essentials
What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us. - A.W. Tozer
That sentence is one of my favorite quotes from one of my all-time favorite books (A.W. Tozer's The Knowledge of the Holy). In other words, theology matters. Yes, you read those words correctly. Theology (the study of of God) matters.
There are many things I'm thankful for and appreciate about SOMA's association and partnership with the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA). At the top of the list is the Statement of Faith of the EFCA. This list of core theological convictions was one of the main reasons we partnered with the EFCA as a church plant in 2007. While not perfect, I believe these ten points summarize biblical and orthodox Christianity. You can read the Statement of Faith here.
Because the Statement of Faith is relatively concise, it allows EFCA churches, and therefore SOMA, to hold to "the significance of silence" position (also summarized as "unity in essentials, dialogue in differences"). Here is how Greg Strand, the EFCA's Director of Biblical Theology and Credentialing, describes this position:
On a number of doctrinal issues in the EFCA we allow beliefs within certain acceptable theological parameters. We focus on the essential truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ as articulated in doctrine while allowing differing views/understandings of the position to be acceptable.
Unity in essentials. Dialogue in differences. Greg does a great job explaining more of this idea and I would encourage you to take a few minutes and read his article on this important point.
My prayer is that at SOMA we would love theology. I pray that we would be united in essentials and that we can have robust dialogue in differences. Theology matters.