The title is not mine but comes from a series of articles I recently discovered. While reading through the “Letters to Stagnant Christians,” I found them both convicting and insightful. The author, David De Bruyn, is a Reformed Baptist pastor in South Africa. Though the context in which he ministers might seem a world away, his “letters” prove that the same spiritual struggles stymie Christian growth and maturity across ethnic, national, and cultural boundaries. I will be posting a new “letter” a few times each until we catch up in the series.

Here is a sample of the fourth, followed by a link to the original article:

Dear Mike,

No, answering letters about spiritual growth is no chore for me. I’m happy to do it, and tentatively hopeful that they’ll be received in the spirit in which I write them. I hope I can answer yours, and that you’ll receive it as one being shepherded, not flayed.

Your difficulty is what I can only call a hodgepodge theology. I don’t mean that your theology is erroneous, or even immature. I mean that your theology is an eclectic mix, a cobbled-together mishmash of your own making, a quilt-work of competing voices, stitched and held together only by your own mind.

Now before you get angry at that statement, I have to state that I have no objection to any Christian listening to a variety of great Christian teachers. It’s one of the blessings of living in the internet age: having fingertip-access to some of the greatest preaching and preachers ever, some of it recorded and audible for our listening edification. You can read just about any classic in Christian history for free. There has never been a time when Christians had so many options to hear or read sound doctrine. As a pastor, this possibility is a great encouragement to me. There is the chance that my people will listen to the best voices, and grow.

But like most gifts, the potential for good use is balanced by the potential for misuse. Your stagnation is a result of the misuse of all this abundant Christian teaching.

“Letters to Stagnant Christians #4: Hodgepodge Theology”

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