Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.
It’s perhaps the bitterest pill for former fundamentalists to swallow to learn to acknowledge that sometimes God sovereignly uses fundies in spite of themselves to accomplish His will in the spreading of some small glimmers truth and the saving of lost souls. Hey, if He can use Balaam’s ass…
Nobody can deny that the abuses in fundamentalism are legion and they are in no way justified even when they come from allegedly good intentions. There can be no excuse given for the battered and broken bodies and spirits of those who have run afoul of the worst that fundamentalism represents. But not all fundamentalists are of such and I’ve also received blessings given by God but passed on through scarred and stained fundamentalist hands; and so have many others.
I like to think that I’ll be with many of my fundamentalist friends and family members again someday in a place where all the errors of fundamentalist theology (and every other ism, schism, sect, and camp) will be behind us. For God is in control of each person’s destiny in, through, and out of fundamentalism. Even as my heart breaks for those who have suffered so much more than I, fundamentalism is part of the path I’ve walked and I’ve gained wisdom from my scars. That being said, the experiences of others are no less legitimate if they are different than mine and some wounds run very deep.
And so I’ll continue on laughing about the silliness, marveling at the craziness, and raising my voice like a trumpet against the harm and injustice found in fundamentalism. And I rejoice, yea, and will rejoice that whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached.
This post concludes the week of fundy love. We will now return to our regularly scheduled inanity, satire, craziness, and all around good times.
22 thoughts on “Fundy Love Day 5: God’s Sovereignty (Whether They Like It Or Not)”
I do believe most fundies want to know Jesus Christ & Him crucified above all, and just aren’t capable of identifying their own agendas, etc. May the Gospel go forth through all of our flawed lives.
Small fundy Christian school & left deep scars on me that took 25 adult years to work through and almost had me walk away from God because of the phoniness I saw & was living (based on Fundy spiritual standards). Thank God He pulled me out of that mess and showed me the real Gospel. That is why I like your writings because the stuff you find online was my reality for decades & I hated it.
I think the pill is even more bitter when they recognize God uses non-fundies also.
Great post, great week. Thanks Darrell.
That was a lovely (and humbling) post.
This has been a great week!!
I most definately praise the Lord for the scars that I recieved from fundys. It is from those scars I learned who Christ does not want me to be. With every ounce of my being I tried to be who they told me I should be to have God’s love and acceptance. No matter how hard I tried I was never good enough. There was always something that I did that made me fall short of their standards. I can’t tell you how many times I walked the aisle and prayed the “sinners prayer”.
God allowed me to travel down a very painful path until I got to the end of me. It was there I fell on my knees and cried out to God as a spritual beggar. I gave Him my life and was tired of doing things mine and mans way.
So, yes the Lord definately used the world of fundyism to show me He was the one true way and all my efforts were nothing but filthy rags.
I forgot to mention that the fundy ways were a heavy burden, but Christs yoke is easy and HIs burden is light for it is He is transforming me from the inside out. That is where true transfomation comes from…the heart. Only God can do that kind of transformation. Rules and regulations….traditions of men…do nothing but make one look good.
It got an very angry email from a fundy family member just a few days ago. In it he explained the fundy mind set to a tee. He simply has to look different from the world…an exterior differnce is all one needs. His ability to look better than the world, in his eyes anyway, makes him feel better than those who have lower external standards as he does. Therefore, he is good we are bad. Believe me, when this guy speaks the condition of his heart is exposed & it is not pretty. I have been praising God ever since then that He freed me from that bondage of men 5 yrs. ago. Not like the publican but as the sinner begging God to forgive him for I too am a worthless sinner.
I do have deep scars that I still am working through. Emails like I got don’t help matters, but I do truly ache for those still caught in the bondage of legalism. As we all know it is a miserable place to be. So instead of anger I choose to forgive. That doesn’t mean I have to return to the abuse, but I do pray that repentance is sought so peace can come between my family and extended family members.
@ Sandra, I’m sorry for the pain you’ve gone through. I expected attacks from “the world, the flesh, and the devil”, but I did not expect to be attacked by fellow believers. It is a miserable place to be! Keep holding onto Christ. After all, He understands what it’s like to be falsely accused!
I find this passage interesting as regards legalism: Jesus said, “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.’ Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen and understand. What goes into a man’s mouth does not make him ‘unclean,’ but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him ‘unclean.’ ” (Matthew 15:8-11)
@pastor’s wife, Thank you! It’s nice to hear a kind word. =)
Thanks Darrell. A great post. All of it true. Thank you and all the letter writers. May God bless each and every one……
Yes, this was a nice conclusion to the week. Certainly a heartfelt summary of how many of us feel about our pasts. Thank you and keep up the good work, Darrell.
My father has been going on a summer mission trip to parts of Appalachia where people are desperately poor. It’s a helps type thing; the men put on roofs, do plumbing, fix up elderly folks’ homes then preach later on. He was commenting to me last year that they ate at the Methodist church and showered at the Catholic church, and his tone was one of… I dunno, suspicion? Distaste? Hard to really describe, but it wasn’t positive.
I had to remind him that there will be a lot of people in heaven that he’d never expect to be there… and some he’ll be looking for who won’t. He grudgingly agreed.
SOmetimes when you are so angry that you want to egg your fomrer fundy pastor’s house, you reevaluate and say “Yes they are VERY, VERY wrong, but God still loves them. It is hard to strike a balance between preaching how wrong they are and realizing life goes on after life in fundyland. This site seems to have found that balance.
someone recently sent me a link to a funny post on this site. As I read the comments, however, I found that much of it is whining about fundamentalist abuses. Let me testify: I was saved at the very fundamentalist Fourth Baptist Church of Minneapolis, MN under the very fundamentalist Dr. Richard V. Clearwaters. I attended the very fundamentalist BJU and then went on to pastor several very fundamental churches, including my current pastorate. The fundamentalism I have known is nothing like what you represent. It is Christ honoring, Bible preaching, warm-hearted, and compassionate for the lost. In the last week we’ve seen 10 folks saved and 7 young people called into full time Christian service. We had a revival with the very fundamental evangelist Dr. Ron Comfort. It was all exceedingly fundamental and it was a little taste of heaven. My advice: quit your whining, fall in love with Jesus, and serve the Lord with gladness!
Since you were kind enough to give me some advice my site, I’d like to offer a thought on yours. Namely that heaven is spelled “h-e-a-v-E-n”
“It was all exceedingly fundamental and it was a little taste of heaven.”
Some would say that you have heaven and hell confused there my friend.
Impressive fundy cred. Would make a nice speaker introduction.
“It is Christ honoring, Bible preaching, warm-hearted, and compassionate for the lost. In the last week weâ€™ve seen 10 folks saved and 7 young people called into full time Christian service. We had a revival with the very fundamental evangelist Dr. Ron Comfort. It was all exceedingly fundamental and it was a little taste of heaven. My advice: quit your whining, fall in love with Jesus, and serve the Lord with gladness!”
Christ-honoring–depends on your definition. We’re talking about Christ, the man of sorrows, the friend of sinners, the Christ who stood AGAINST the legalism of the Pharisees.
Bible-preaching–that would be a rarity, as most fundy pastors pick a “proof-text” and move on from their to their own ideas.
As far as numbers evangelism. . I am not for it at all. Most of these “converts” are either praying for the fifty millionth time to get saved (due to being made to feel so guilty and doubtful by the evanglist’s message), young children, or temporary converts. Statistically speaking, the majority are never discipled.
Young people going into full-time ministry. .yeah. .because their parents are pressuring them to do that, most likely. . and so of course they raised their hands to commit to it. They don’t have a choice. I wonder how many of them will actually make it into full-time ministry.
A little”taste of heaven”. . ha! I have to stop before I laugh too hard. . .sorry!
I don’t mind most of the satire, but I do think that for the most part, the negativity is a misrepresentation of what a lot of us who would cast ourselves in as fundamentalists stand for.
Either way, I do get a good chuckle from time to time and I certainly don’t hate you for whatever reason.
I’m just not sure I’d recommend this site to my friends.. lol.
No worries. Most of my fundy friends don’t read it either. 🙂
Fundies ALWAYS see anything negative about themselves as misrepresentation.
“We aren’t like that!” seems to be the standard answer. It truly is hard to see many of the problems with IFBism when you’re on the INSIDE. x
I donâ€™t mind most of the satire, but I do think that for the most part, the negativity in the comments section is a misrepresentation of what a lot of us who would cast ourselves in as fundamentalists stand for.
I don’t actually take the posts themselves as necessarily hateful.
Either way, I do get a good chuckle from time to time and I certainly donâ€™t hate you for whatever reason.
Iâ€™m just not sure Iâ€™d recommend this site to my friends.. lol.
“I found that much of it is whining about fundamentalist abuses.”
This is contrary to the fundamental belief of sweeping abuses under the rug.