KINGDOM COME: Chapter One
Introducing A Spiritual Legacy: Strangers At Home is the title of the first chapter of Kingdom Come. It is here that we are introduced to the two title characters and the perspectives that will be compared and discussed throughout the book. You can purchase the book HERE. Hicks & Valentine (H & V) offer a critique of the contemporary churches of Christ that is accurate, as far as I can see. "For the most part, we are historically blind. We don't know our history and our sense of spiritual heritage is distorted. On the one hand, some believe the Churches of Christ have been bereft of spiritual vigor since their emerence in the early twentieth century. ... On the other hand, some find their spiritual identity in church practices. They believe this is their spiritual heritage. Their spiritual life is shaped by debates with 'denominationalists.' Their spiritual vitor is found in their exclusive identity as the one true church." (p. 15) It is a big mission to take on both of these perspectives and try to help bring light to the mistakes each makes. However, it is through the lives of Lipscomb and Harding that H & V hope to bring some perspective. History is offered of the Nashville Bible School and Potter Bible College, as well as Harding and Lipscomb themselves. Other names of the day are mentioned as well, giving notice to the prominence of R. L. Whiteside and R. H. Boll in particular. Lest anyone think that Lipscob and Harding are being held up as perfect specimens of Christianity, admission is made that both men had significant faults. "Indeed, we regret that they both embraced the 1906 division between the Churches of Christ and the Christian Church as a lamentable good..." (p. 23). Other failings are mentioned as well, but it is pointed out that these men were attempting to follow Jesus Christ in their lives. This introductory chapter did what all good introductories do; it makes me want to read the rest of the book. Comments of others reading the book are welcome. For this first post, I think it would be good for those who are reading along to leave a note letting us know that you are going along with us. Bobby Valentine will be checking in after his preacher's retreat is over later in the week. I do not know if John Mark Hicks will check in or not. But it will be good to read together and to discuss the ideals of this important book. Thanks for reading!