(While this was originally a duplicate of something from another blog, and that other blog was merged here, this post has been kept because of the huge amount of comment posted below.)
The Old Testament provides a wealth of imagery for describing our virtual congregation.
The background of the Bible presumes that humans are wired for ANE feudalism. Thus, this blog is a virtual feudal grant from God and I am the clan chief who leads a family. I am responsible to God for how I exercise dominion here.
Everyone is welcome. There is a covenant of faith in force here that guides what I write and what comments I permit through moderation. Aside from the obvious references to the Radix Fidem meta-religion outline posted here on our parish parlor blog (see the tab above), our covenant recognizes two primary marks of the Spirit’s Presence in your life: penitent humility and not disputing against Scripture. If we can see those two marks, we will assume you are brothers and sisters in this covenant of faith.
If you can’t embrace all that stuff, but still want to be friends, you will be regarded as resident aliens. You aren’t part of that family of faith covenant, but we offer another covenant of alliance, the one symbolized by sharing a meal in the Old Testament. I’m still your pastor/elder.
Enemies can post so long as it’s on-topic and seems to address something of substance. You’ll have to understand that I will seek to use hostile comments as opportunities to teach those who are not so hostile. It’s like a grant of safe passage for mutual benefit or maybe humanitarian reasons. I’ll pray for anybody.
I don’t take myself that seriously, so poking at me is not in itself a violation of protocol. I delete comments that serve no discernible purpose in what we do here, just like spam.
What’s different is that I don’t measure these things merely by intellect and reason. It’s not a question of rational categories. The boundaries aren’t precise and static, but alive. As with biblical language, I don’t define; I indicate. Context is everything in this world when bringing to bear the moral truth of God, which is rooted outside this world. I don’t mind trying to explain, but there are some things not open to debate.