Principle #2: The Biblical Principle: scriptural truth as the primary source for what we believe and do.
The Bible is the word of God. Slaughter opens this chapter with the story of the discovery of a dusty book, unused, unread, discovered in the renovation of the temple described in II Kings 22. It was the bible – probably the book of Deuteronomy. It=s message had gone unheard by the people for decades. When the King heard the words of the book, he realized that they had drastically deviated from God=s plan… Josiah had the people gather at the temple to hear the words of the book that had been found on a dusty shelf. The result was radical revitalization! The people turned from dead institutionalism to the living God. Renewal grows out of rediscovery of biblical truth. The church rediscovers the lost book…. The Bible becomes the standard for faith in the midst of a sea of voices crying to be heard in the philosophical and moral wilderness (SE: 48).
Reading the New Testament as a teen, Slaughter became fascinated with the Jesus of the Gospels. The bible is the word of God with the small Aw@ that points us to the living Word, God with the capital AW.@ The focus is not the Bible; the focus is Christ. (SE: 52). Radical obedience in 1979 led to an ongoing understanding that Alove thy neighbor as thyself@ was meant to be obeyed literally; this meant that when you buy a pair of shoes for yourself, you buy a pair for someone needy. When you put braces on your kid=s teeth, you put braces on the teeth of a child in poverty. Renewal broke out at our church when the people began to actively do what we had been reading in God=s written Word. Jesus was taking us past the information to the place of transformation (SE: 56). It is the business of the church to enable people to come to this point of biblical understanding, where transformation results (SE: 57). The Bible brings obedience into focus.
NOTE (my response)
SE: Michael Slaughter, Spiritual Entrepreneurs: Six Principles for Risking Renewal (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1994). Quotes from the book are in italics.
“First Love: A Christ Centered Environment for Church Renewal” by Michael Slaughter. Dayton, OH: Whaleprints at United Theological Seminary, 1990. (video; currently unavailable.)
The quote is from Major League Disciple Making: An Overview of the Best Research on the Cell Church, an online course developed for the Institute for Discipleship at www.BeADisciple.com in 2009. Course materials, including these lectures, can be downloaded here: http://www.disciplewalk.com/IFD_MLD_Class_Links.html
All Scripture quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Please review the page How and Why We Use Quotes.