I won’t comment on the President’s spiritual condition. Very few could actually understand that and I do hope it’s true, but one thing I will disagree with is the comment below in bold. I used to believe church attendance is optional as well, but it’s simply not true. I will quote a bit of Luke here though:
A Tree and Its Fruit
43 “No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. 44 Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers. 45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. Luke 6:43-45
President Obama’s Christian Faith “Has Deepened” in Second Term, Say Spiritual Advisers
Joshua DuBois, a longtime spiritual adviser to Obama who led the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships during the president’s first term, says that, in fact, church attendance really has no bearing on his devotion to Christianity.
Something has “deepened” alright and I think you need boots for that. <LOL>
Here’s what the Belgic Confession of Faith states about church membership and attendance:
Article 28: The Obligations of Church Members
- We believe that since this holy assembly and congregation is the gathering of those who are saved and there is no salvation apart from it, no one ought to withdraw from it, content to be by himself, regardless of his status or condition.
But all people are obliged to join and unite with it, keeping the unity of the church by submitting to its instruction and discipline, by bending their necks under the yoke of Jesus Christ, and by serving to build up one another, according to the gifts God has given them as members of each other in the same body.
And to preserve this unity more effectively, it is the duty of all believers, according to God’s Word, to separate themselves from those who do not belong to the church, in order to join this assembly wherever God has established it, even if civil authorities and royal decrees forbid and death and physical punishment result.
And so, all who withdraw from the church or do not join it act contrary to God’s ordinance.
Here’s a challenge for you – a New Year’s resolution if you will. I strongly encourage you to read through the Belgic Confession of Faith early in 2015. I really wish I had been exposed to this document many years ago as it answers a ton of questions about some basic and fundamental Christian doctrine. I use it as a reference quite often but I’m gonna try and spend some time each morning reading through and studying this again as well. The Reformed churches seem to really love the Heidelberg Catechism, and that is great as well,
but I’m a bit partial to the Belgic Confession, possibly because of its brevity.
There are 37 articles and you could very easily read one or two a day and easily complete the reading in less than a month. The second version below has scripture references which confirm from the Bible the things stated in the confession. Here are the scripture references for Article 28, so you can see that this could easily form the basis of a good bible study:
1 Pet. 3:20; Joel 2:32
Acts 2:40; Isa. 52:11
Ps. 22:23; Eph. 4:3,12; Heb. 2:12
Ps. 2:10-12; Matt. 11:29
Eph. 4:12,16; 1 Cor. 12:12, etc.
Acts 2:40; Isa. 52:11; 2 Cor. 6:17; Rev. 18:4
Matt. 12:30; 24:28; Isa. 49:22; Rev. 17:14
Dan. 3:17-18; 6:8-10; Rev. 14:14; Acts 4:17,19; 17:7; 18:13
Creeds and confessions are not infallible – as God’s Word is – but I’ve found nothing at all that is at odds with Scripture in this confession. Creeds and confessions – good ones- can be excellent summaries of doctrine.
Godly men created these things and they have stood the test of time. The Belgic is 454 years old.
During the sixteenth century the churches in this country were exposed to the most terrible persecution by the Roman Catholic government. To protest against this cruel oppression, and to prove to the persecutors that the adherents of the Reformed faith were not rebels, as was laid to their charge, but law-abiding citizens who professed the true Christian doctrine according to the Holy Scriptures, de Bräs prepared this confession in the year 1561.
The Belgic Confession of Faith
Belgic Confession with Scripture Texts