What did that mean? I have no idea, and I don't really care, but the "dooby dooby doo" has stuck with me all these years. I'll come back to this...
Does the fact "People have 24/7 access to high-quality information and inspiration" also help us determine what is high quality info/inspi, or just blur the lines between expertise and ignorance-with-means? Some will study reputable sources on a subject, while others will employ a YouTube search bar. There is something to be said for discernment. I don't mean that to be insulting, but to differentiate between the one who studies a subject and employs common sense toward it and another who simply holds an opinion without doing proverbial "leg-work" on it. Are the two contributors given equal hearing and/or their statements given equal weight?
I would say no. Even though I can understand certain scientific/mathematical concepts (and perhaps discuss them without the dream-like, shadowy sound of a distant banjo playing in the background), I'm profoundly out of my element standing in front of a collegiate science class to give a lecture. But would my words hold a little more weight than a new or immature believer/follower of Jesus? Would a seasoned servant of Christ's words hold a little more weight than mine?
I should hope so.
And that's not an insulting thing to me, or to anyone else. Those who learn are to share all things with those who teach (Galatians 6:6), but this implies our need to learn before we can teach rather than assume our knowledge from the start. We are not to rush to teach, knowing that we will be judged more harshly for the things we say (James 3:1), and we should allow time for teachers to be proven worthy in Christ (1 Timothy 3:6). We are also told that elders are to be able to teach the gospel of Jesus with sound (i.e. true, valid) doctrine AND be able to refute falsehood (Titus 1:9). People are free to share opinions, but the Word of God is not malleable by the opinions of men or women. "What does the text say?" will always be more important than "What does the text say to me?"
The Ward's write in their post:
More and more people in churches are tired of sitting silently, staring at the backs of each other's heads—they want to connect with one another, to love and support and encourage and build one another up, like the Bible tells us to. People are tired of meeting in special buildings and hiding away from the world around them—they want to transform their neighborhoods and communities. God's people are tired of being passive consumers, sitting back in the pews and quietly listening—they want to be active participants, empowered to have a voice and make a difference.
Some churches have stopped meeting in special buildings and started getting together in homes, in coffee shops, in bars, in community centers, even in the local park. Some churches are sticking with the traditional service but making their sermons shorter and giving people opportunity to question and discuss what they've learned. Still others are forming groups to focus on their neighborhood and community and to embrace the marginalized in their cities. More and more churches are finding creative ways to prioritize connection, dialogue, participation and empowerment.
These changes are exciting, because the church is starting to look more like it did in the New Testament—not a hierarchy, but a community of brothers and sisters, all equals under one head, who all had a voice and participated in worship together, in their homes and in their neighborhoods. Preachers are becoming facilitators, willing to share the stage and the microphone to give all of God's people a voice and an impact.
When we look at the early Church through the book of Acts and the letters of the New Testament, we see a baby Church that's being instructed to grow out of their identities in Christ... and thrive! Yes, there are to be all the things these authors speak of in the lives of Christ's followers, but they miss the crucial areas of teaching and leadership these New Testament texts make clear. Followers of Jesus were not to be brought into the kingdom and left to their own devices, but discipled! Paul's and Peter's times of teaching were surely not brief meditations followed by a longer time of group-sharing what that means to those present. In fact, one account paints something more akin to marathon teaching sessions like in David Platt's Secret Church... and then some (Acts 20:7-11)! What we see in the NT Church is people who had a hunger to learn and grow, the result being informed disciples living out of a transformed-and-sanctified identity (Acts 17:11)!
Since we all grow at different rates, our service in the body of Christ will look different individually, but service is always commanded communally also. Pastors (biblically, shepherds of God's flock) are certainly to share the mic and give voice to the struggles, triumphs, and growth of those under his charge, but he is also to be discerning and protect the flock from wolves who would pervert the truth, either through ignorance or deceitful scheming (Acts 20:28ff, Ephesians 4:14). Jesus says (Matthew 7:21, John 10:14), Paul agrees (2 Corinthians 13:5), and John confirms (1 John 2:19) that we can be deceived by pious acts but God knows those who truly have submitted to God in Christ. Those who have submitted to Christ have changed their identity from darkness to light (Ephesians 5:8), and their deeds will reflect that change (Matthew 7:15-20, Luke 7:35, James 2:18).
The problem I see with this post is the seeming focus away from teaching and toward sharing, while our culture shows signs that our focus on sharing has led to a profound confusion over scripture's clear teaching. For example, we have seen key Christian leaders turn from the clear, historical teachings of scripture and Church history on sin because of 1) close personal relationships with sinners AND 2) a profound rejection of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The result has been people buying into a cultural group of people rather than being transformed through the saving work of Jesus on the cross.
BE --> DO, BE, DO, BE, DO...