Warning isn't easy...

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We think we don't need warnings, but we do. Just like the Christians pastored by the Apostle Paul in the decadent Roman Empire, we need our pastors warning us house to house, day and night, with tears.

But we have no patience for it. Transfer us to Ephesus under the pastoral care of the Apostle Paul and listen to us whine. "Why does he want to meet with me? I don't need to meet with him. If he has something to say, he can text me. Has my wife been talking to his wife? Why can't she keep her big mouth shut?"

We want a reputation for authentic spirituality and deep theological insight, so we update and tweet spiritual-sounding quotes that make it seem as if...

we have learned the truths we're tweeting. Which we haven't. At all.

Our spiritual insights put online are the way we dress ourselves to make a good impression on FB friends, whatever that is. Quotes we tweet are styles and fads. Chesterton warned against scholarship's "giggling excitement over fashion," yet he never saw one FB page of a Christian quoting some book he hasn't read by some super-apostle he hasn't met. FB pages are the way Christians get a legal high: "Like wow man! Awesomely deep!"

All sorts of meaning-exchanges but no intimacy.

Then one of the elders asks to meet with us and we resent him because...

He's not wanting to catch up on our tweets or FB updates.

He knows and loves me.

And Scripture tells me to obey him:

Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you. (Hebrews 13:17)

Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

Want to get in touch? Send Tim an email!