This weekend the movie sequel entitled “Clash of the Titans” opens in theaters. So it will be with the opening of the 2012 General Conference. In the movie the clash is between different Gods, kings and people . In Tampa the clash will be between competing views of Holy Scripture.
Key issues will be addressed. Among them: the restructuring of the church, the effectiveness of clergy, changes to the church clergy pension system, and changing the UMC Book of Discipline regarding homosexuality. Talk about hitting the fan. The real clash with whatever issue is debated has to do with different views of Holy Scripture.
It’s about competing world views and the authority of Scripture. Due to limits on space here- I point out the two dominant differing views. One is what I call the subjective view. At the heart here is the belief in ‘continuing revelation’. It’s the belief that whereas God gave revelation for past times, what is needed today is a view of Scripture that relates to today. Different times need a ‘relevant’ view of Scripture. Its a view which rejects the atoning sacrifice of Christ for the sins of the world. It’s a view of Scripture where political terms like left and right are used to describe people’s spirituality. It’s a view of Christ as a great guy but not the Savior of the world. In the pacific northwest conference it’s the continuing belief in the Sophia Goddess and the influence of Dr. Rebecca Parker’s writings-especially her second book-“Saving Paradise: How Christianity Traded Love of this World for Crucifixion and Empire.” Contrast this with the inerrant view of Scripture. This view asserts Jesus Christ, as the Living Word. That Holy Scripture is God breathed and like Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. This view of scripture believes that Christ came into the world to testify to the truth-John 18:37. That only in Christ does one have access to God, that only in Christ do we have the right sacrifice for our sins, for He alone is the way, the truth, and through him our reborn life. Two different views on the the authority and interpretation of Holy Scripture.
So stay tuned. While the movie ‘The Clash of the Titans’ continues in theaters during General Conference, there will be a clash of views regarding Scripture taking place during General Conference. What’s it called? Hitting the Fan!