I’m new to the blog community of Christians. This, coupled with my rather bull-in-a-china-shop disposition and contrarian viewpoint could easily suggest any number of unsavory speculations regarding my motives or personal beliefs.With that in mind, I offer here a digest of some things I believe to help any who are interested to better understand why I might be taking a given stance or making a certain point.[Note: As described above, this is not meant to be comprehensive but rather highlight where I likely differ from what most expect in a Bible-believing Christian.]1. I believe the central doctrine of the Christian Faith, the main purpose of all 4 gospels and the central teaching of Acts, is that Jesus is the Christ.2. I believe the Biblical notion of “salvation” and “being saved” is not quite what Christians generally assume.3. I believe Christians generally subscribe to a human-centered view of Christianity where Jesus and God orbit humanity. The Salvation of Humanity [whatever that means] is seen as an end in itself rather than both an end and a means to a much greater end [God’s desire for a Righteous People (Malachi 3:3, Luke 3:17-18, Acts 3:26, Romans 6:4, Titus 2:14, Hebrews 9:14, 1st Peter 2:24, 2nd Peter 1:4-5, 1st John 3:4-5)]
4. I believe doctrine derived from Paul is given more importance than teachings explicitly given by Christ.
5. I believe the church confuses questioning of doctrine with attacks on the faith itself. Origen, the greatest scholar and theologian of the 2nd Century [and called The Father of Christian Theology] would not even be allowed in most conservative churches today.
6. I believe one cannot understand Jesus without understanding the struggle between Israel and God. In particular, the nature and reason for the New Covenant has to be understood in light of the failure of the first on a national rather than individual basis. (Jeremiah 31:31-34)
7. I believe Christianity is simple and hard rather than complicated and easy. I believe Jesus would agree (Matthew 6:24, Matthew 7:13-14, Luke 13:24, Luke 14:26-35). However, it is only in seeing our own ends as somehow better than God’s that the difficulty lies.
8. I believe there is absolutely no evidence from the Old Testament that the problem God was trying to solve through Christ was How do I let imperfect humans into heaven? I believe much can be gained by investigating what problems God does appear to wrestle with in the vast Old Testament.