Knowing the “What” and “Why”

Ephesians 4:4-6 “[4] There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call—[5] one Lord, one faith, one baptism, [6] one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

In most congregational visits I’m asked what’s the best guidance I can give churches. It is a challenging question as each congregation is unique. That said, there are some general insights that apply across the board. After all, Ohio District congregations are in a three-state region in the United States. 

As Christians, we all must cope with the influence of society. The dominate philosophy in the West is humanism. Between broadcast news and public education, entertainment and social media, it’s impossible to avoid the hyper-individualism of the age. Because this influence is so pervasive, it is wise for our congregations to equip members counter act it. 

One method is ensuring members can know that just “what” we believe, but “why” we believe it. Churches can address this by providing greater depth and breadth of the Bible, offering opportunities to learn throughout the week. 

Today’s Scripture passage illustrates this distinction between “what” and “why”. What we believe about God is broadly understood. We believe in the Trinity, God the Father the Son and Holy Spirit. I dare say far fewer of our members know why we believe in the Trinity. 

We believe in the Trinity because Scripture describes all three persons of the Godhead of having divine attributes. In addition, Scripture describes the Trinity. Ephesians 4:4-6 is such a passage. Before continuing, go ahead and identify the Trinity in this passage. 

If you’d like to double check your findings, the passage refers to the Holy Spirit (“Spirit” in verse 4), Jesus (“Lord” in verse 5) and the Father (“God and Father” in verse 6). 

Better understanding why we believe what we believe will strengthen us against the tides of society. Knowing our “why” will also help us encourage one another in the faith. Finally, knowing both “what” we believe and “why” we believe it better prepares us to share Christ with those who are curious about God.

Until next week, the Lord bless and guide.

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