If the Church Were Christian

Where did the church go wrong? For Quaker pastor and author Philip Gulley, it’s not heeding Jesus’s central message: compassion.

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Jon Watts

Jon Watts launched and directed the QuakerSpeak project for its first 6 seasons. Keep up to date with Jon’s work at his website.

8 thoughts on “If the Church Were Christian

  1. Let’s hope that the wider church will listen and hear you, Phil. Yet – to have to gtive up the principle that Jesus gave them a unique message as the only begotten son of God . . . . . .

  2. If the church were Christian it would believe that Jesus was the son of God. That God himself came down to free us of judgment, self-imposed as well as outwardly.
    If the church were Christian they wouldn’t be afraid to go directly to God for life’s most difficult decisions.
    Compassion flowed out of Jesus but so did fairness. He treated women and children as equals with men.
    Love is more than compassion. That’s why Jesus wept when looking upon Jerusalem he realized they did not recognize Him and He couldn’t save them from what was coming upon them. Compassion without fairness and wisdom is the path to self-destruction.
    Simplistic solutions to how to become more like Jesus belies the complexity of being part of a plan greater than the human mind can comprehend.

  3. Sir, Thank you for speaking truthfully to what you believe. I do have some serious issues with your beliefs though which I will address as a response to your quotes from the transcript.

    “especially fundamental religion, a poor advertisement for the reality of God”
    In this statement you are, I assume, saying that the Word of God is somehow deficient in its ability to actually be what it proclaims, the inerrant and complete Word of God.

    2 Timothy 3:16-17: All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

    You later stated, “If the church were Christian, it would lose its fascination with doctrines and creeds, which to me always seem to confine the will of God to a sentence.”

    But you are not only against doctrines which are derived from the Word of God, you are speaking against the Word of God who is Christ manifest! You claim there is something more than the Word of God, this is heresy! Then you stated, “If the church were Christian, it would welcome the other unconditionally. It would not say to gay people, “If you repent of your lifestyle, you are welcome here.”’

    First, the church should welcome all for sinners may come to know His glory through us. But the church os the gathering place for believers, first. Because a little leaven will spoil the whole batch! A non-repentant sinner of any ilk should not be a church member. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 5, “And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have gone into mourning and have put out of your fellowship the man who has been doing this?” Yes, he is speaking to those already members of the body. Paul later states, “I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. ” Yes, we have to be in the world but not of it so as to bring the sinner to the truth for salvation.

    As one who was gay and was a sinner, the Lord led me to truth and salvation through the very Word you condemn. Who are you through this so-called compassion to deny me the right to carry my cross and be redeemed! If you love you speak truth and that is only through the Bible, not some man-made desire of the flesh to be open and non-condemning. You condemn with lies!

    Truth is clearly demonstrated by the same Jesus you claim to know who you say speaks of only compassion. He speaks of love for God above all else, meaning you are to revere Him and His word, which is made manifest in His Son, Jesus Christ (John 1), and for each other, the Body for Christ. “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God (Matthew 22:36-40) with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

    What does it mean to love someone? Do we lie to those we love? Do you think God lied to you when He left you His word? Do you even believe in Jesus? Sir, you do a great disservice to the Lord and His Holy Word and are heretical and blasphemous. Your last statement speaks to your lack of knowledge of Biblical truths, “I’m fortunate enough to have found a community of Quakers who are committed to being the church in their care for others, in their commitment to justice, and in their love for the underdog.” No where did you state you are out bringing the lost to truth as we are called int he Great Commission, just bandaging the sinner who then goes off to sin again. Justice is the Lord’s and His wrath will be wrought to evil-doers!

    The Quaker Church will surely be under judgement as we can look to the Book of Revelation and Jesus’ rebuke of the various churches of which the Quaker/Friends are partakers of. I am led to His condemnation of the church on Thyatria for your allowance of sexual immorality, and to Ephesus who lost its love for Jesus who is God and is the Word you rebuke as not relevant for this modern age, or Sardis for your lack of the life that comes from pure faith in the Risen King!

    Lastly, although there is so much more I could bring to your attention, you stated, “I don’t think Jesus intended to start a religion.” Do you know the scriptures at all? The Old Covenant ended when Jesus died on the cross. He was then the New Covenant. The Jews were unable to find salvation through works, so He brought us His teachings on salvation through following Him, not the OT laws. Sir, please find within yourself the gumption to reacquaint yourself with His Holy Word. I mean this with all love and sincerity.

    Here is a good link for you on how to start reading the Bible and falling in love with truth:https://youtu.be/H0jl6BAJBE4

    Do you know why your love is cold and you are depressed and have little faith? I plead with the love of Christ in Truth and Spirit for repentance and that you seek to bring truth to the others in your church who are of the same failings. As a teacher of the Word you will be held more responsible. I speak this way to you out of love because as a fallen brother it is my heart’s duty to Christ to lead you back to Him!

    In Truth,

  4. Your comments are repeating division, separation, and isolation by blaming “The Church.” People make up the Church. People are flawed!!!! “If the Church were Christian?” Oh my, humans are broken. We are not Jesus. Why do you blame others for their walk? Why not state how Quakers believe differently to encourage others and to allow others to have the freedom to explore spiritual truth? This is the first video I’ve seen where a Quaker (and a Quaker Pastor to boot) is condemning their brothers and sisters. It really makes me sad and my heart aches. I hope you will have the compassion to pray for those you condemn.

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