Updates to this post are kept in an document containing all my notes here.
This discussion is a very important one and one the modern church is very confused about. What if being separate is actually good not just for us but for them? What if they are drawn to us because we are not like them? Are we not like them simply for the sake of being different or are we actually being drawn to something else, something better? Is being separate a process which progresses through time, like sanctification, or have we already arrived?
- R.C. defines being separate by telling a story about the word “antithesis”.
- Genesis 3 – Two kinds of people in the world, seed of woman and seed of serpent, and these two people are going to be at war.
- Separate can be defined as a need to understand ourselves in terms of this war, us/them, Kingdom of God vs. Kingdom of Man, everything needs to be understood within this context.
- The root to the Greek word Church means “The called out ones.” Called out from what? Called out from the world.
- References books by David Wells.
- Are we suppose to look like the world or are we to be distinct?
- Lawrence demonstrates God calling out His people through redemptive history.
- What is the devil’s game?
- To create a false faith. How can we disguise this false faith so that it looks just like Christianity.
- What is the evangelicals game?
- To disguise the faith so that it looks more like world.
- What do you get from all this? The world in the church.
- Default position should be different, not same.
- This does not mean we walk on our hands.
- What is the world?
- If aliens discovered our world would they be able to tell the difference between us and them?
- Is not sleeping around, not taking the Lord’s name in vain and being nice enough?
- Being not like the world requires one to be deliberate. You must ask why am I doing this.
- References 2 Cor. 6 – “Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord,…”
- Not saying to heck with the world, saying the way to proclaim the gospel to the world is to be distinct and set apart. Ties this into God’s work with Abraham in making him set apart, separate, distinct.
- Foolish separatism slips into legalism.
- Don’t drink, don’t smoke.
- Being separate should also be reflected in our values, we should not value what the world wants.
- Long discussion about the blessings of being depriving ourselves of what the world values and embracing that which God values.
- Pragmatism in church does not work.
- How does Acts 7 look in comparison to the seeker sensitive movement?
- What are the requirements for joining St. Peter’s?
- You vow to grow as a Christian.
- The simple life means having a Christ centered life (the one thing) how does this conflict with not living separately?
- How separate are you? “We are endeavoring to our utmost to live our lives in a way that glorifies God” Separate is not worn as badge of pride.
- Separate has not been achieved.
- Simple, Separate, Deliberate, To the Glory of God and the Building of His Kingdom
- These are goals. We are not there yet.
- What are legitimate distinctives? Do the men lead? Do the women obey? Do we assume the responsibilities for educating our children.
- In what ways does the Bible call us to separate from those around us?
- Is it wrong to flee temptation? Is this a retreatist attitude?