If you understand these things, you would hardly be surprised at what characterizes our behavior under this covenant.
We prefer natural settings for worship. At the same time, we as individuals tend to worship privately all day every day. It’s simply our orientation. We keep stumbling across natural chapels of worship, and can’t stand to go very long with spending some time in them. A whole day without at least a few moments with our fellow creatures in praise of the Father makes us feel drained and empty. And the more wild and natural the setting, the better.
We have the same longing for other humans who see the world this way. Right now, that’s pretty tough to fulfill. We believe this is a move of God in our world right alongside His wrath falling on the sins of our civilization. There will always be a few folks who repent and do what’s right, and we cannot remain silent about this vast treasury of truth we have found. We might be circumspect in how we go about sharing the specifics, but we can’t hide the glowing joy of peace with God and His Creation.
His Law Covenants promise an outpouring of blessings for those who walk consistent with His moral character. Creation itself stands ready to cooperate with our efforts to walk in this divine mission. Reality prefers dealing with those of us who are heart-led; we get preferential treatment. We know what to expect, or at least can learn far better than the our fellow Americans. It might look like miracles to them, but it’s just natural to us.
There are two sources of frustration we face. The first is the obvious legacy of nonsense we have to identify and discard from our minds. That’s a tall order, and it likely takes the rest of our lives. The second is that for centuries the natural world has had precious little moral guidance from heart-led followers of Christ. This second part requires a little effort to think through, another tall order.
Nature has suffered entirely too much heart-less guidance and abuse from Americans. There’s an awful lot of wounds to heal. The natural world is not going to be quite so responsive to us as it was to Adam in the Garden before the Fall. And by our logic, it would seem naturally that any object that has suffered a lot of misguided human handling would be less responsive than something in a pristine natural state. Thus, a piece of junk food wrapper blowing in the wind will not likely yield to us in friendship the way a leaf from uncultivated trees might.
But the question remains: What has God placed in your hands? The center of your daily mission does not rest on someone else’s academic study of what the world needs. We have to be careful to spend time alone with God in our wild prayer chapel and discard all the junk of American moral ideas. Not that we cease to be aware of those values, but that we cease serving them. You’ll have to find your own sense of peace in the interplay between these two forces in your soul, but the more firmly you can wrap your head around ancient Hebrew morals, the better your grip on God’s truth — and it’s grip on you.
With Paul, we are going to have to travel on Roman Roads and use the protection of Roman Law to spread the gospel within the Roman Empire. Being an idealist or absolutist is foreign to Biblical Law; we cannot demand perfection in this world. Precious few elements in God’s character represent hard and fast boundaries. We have all confidence that your heart can tell you what God wants from you, and what He wants for you, as you go about your mission and calling. The American law and culture is frankly hostile to what we teach, and it requires a strong communion with God to discern what tactics and strategy we use to handle that hostility.
Inevitably your choices will witness to a different approach to life. Equally inevitable is that people will ask questions. We offer written stuff like this to help you shape your answers to those questions. The idea is not to put them off, but to honestly explain how you belong to something very different. You have to leave the door open for them. Some of the folks you encounter will have noticed their own internal conflicts and will be seeking a way out of the confusion. Their hearts are trying to get their minds’ attention. You just might have the key to their escape.
Never forget the lesson of Joseph in Pharaoh’s court. He was obliged to participate in a lot of pagan ritual and other departures from his comfort zone in order to carry out his mission from God. Our covenant does not vest other people with the authority to decide for you what it means to follow God. The most we can do is warn you that some choice you make interferes with our own mission, so there has to be some kind of buffer zone between us. We hope and pray that somewhere in the near future, there will be multiple congregations of Radix Fidem scattered around the world, and you can negotiate associating with one or another. However, the organizational leader of each congregation is an elder, and God’s ideal is that you don’t cause unnecessary hassles for the elders.
Again, the standard is a matter of whether you can live with the elder, and the elder can live with you. Nothing keeps you from forming a new congregation with yourself as elder.
The online eldership is another matter. A virtual community of faith will echo a literal local congregation, but there are obvious and unavoidable differences. At the time this is written, your author currently serves as the senior elder of the online community. It so happens I already know that it is impossible to lead the online community of faith as I do my own house church. I also know that I cannot run my blog the way I would a community forum. God forbid this whole thing rest entirely on my personal presence.
This religion was born online and it will always reflect that. It’s also currently in its infancy. For example, we have no one who has volunteered or been appointed as pastor to guide our worship rituals. It’s probably less critical as long as this community remains just an online presence. But God has promised to finish what He starts, and we are utterly convinced He is the one who started this thing.
Soon we hope to be notified of actual congregations forming around some of our online members. I personally believe that this may require God’s hand stirring things up enough in America that people feel the need to search for something like our expression of faith. We welcome any group that affirms they can embrace this covenant. It’s not a body of doctrine, but an orientation. Again, it’s a matter of, “We can live with that.” We’ll make all our resources available, meager as they may be, to support and nurture those who wish to be a part of us.
We expect you to hold to the original feudal organization, but you are free to organize your worship meetings as you like. We are confident that your embrace of this covenant will guide you sufficiently to avoid anything that might make the rest of us uncomfortable. The same goes for your daily conduct as members of this religion.
Let your hearts lead.