[Added pre-edit: Lest the following be misread as me poking fun of all such doctrinal content or commitment, be assured that I think at least some of what is below is worth spelling out. My parody is aimed at how much some feel compelled to add to it. I used to have these inclinations myself (and still have some). So I’m stepping on my own toes here as well. But the older I get, the more I am convicted to notice that Jesus inflicted almost none of this kind of stuff on any of those seeking his saving presence.]
Perhaps this belongs more in the humor section than here, but since we’re on themes of exactly what we believe, and how big or small our tents should be, … does anybody else sense that we are all experiencing “doctrinal statement creep”? I.e. even within my own 50+ year lifetime, it seems to me that the “what we believe”, and “what you need to believe too” statements pushed by Christian organizations have been bloating out into finer and finer detail. I think we’re seeing a “Whack-a-mole” game in full play. Which prompted me to push this bit of pointed parody:
WHAT WE BELIEVE, AND YOU NEED TO BELIEVE TOO IF YOU CARE ABOUT YOUR IMMORTAL SOUL
We believe in the Triune God, represented by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
We believe that the Bible in its inerrant, original King James autograph is the directly dictated Word of God.
We believe in the Virgin Birth, the crucifixion, the resurrection, and the imminent return of Jesus Christ,
and in a literal heaven and a literal fire-and-brimstone hell.
We also believe there is only one true understanding of all scriptures, and that we alone possess it, and it includes (but is not limited to) all of the following:
That creation occurred October 22, 4004 BC 9:00 GMT**
**As we wish to remain a ‘big tent’ organization, allowing for diversity among our members, we allow for wiggle room on the 9:00 figure to +/- 30 minutes. Disagreement beyond 30 may be tolerated though we will pray for you to see the light. Disagreements beyond 60 minutes place your soul in peril.
Adam and Eve were specially created on the 6th 24-hour day; Adam from the dust of the ground, and Eve from Adam’s rib.
Adam and Eve were both formed as adults with all the attendant wisdom and knowledge this entails.
They both had belly buttons***, and none of this shall be deemed to be a deceit on God’s part.
*** Some members have raised dissension about whether these were “innies” or “outies”. We currently have scholars looking into the Holy Word to resolve this issue, though we all know that only innies would be found in any pre-fall paradise. We are merely working to shore up where the scriptural support can be found to show this.
All of creation was perfect until the fall.
All valid sexuality (including thoughts) must be strictly limited to between 1.0 man and 1.0 woman who have been married by the church.
Our corpus of essential beliefs includes but is not limited to the above. The entire KJV Bible is our fully expressed statement of faith, and we reserve the right to correct you should you be found to differ on anything found in it. Any so-called “paradoxes” or “contradictions” have been resolved according to our special understandings. The infallibility and inerrancy of the King James Version also extends to our own present understandings of it.
Last, but certainly not least … If you are loyal to the correct (our) political party, then special dispensation can be granted you, excusing you from belief in anything or even everything above.
BUT, If you are found to belong to a wrong political cause or party, then any and all agreement you may have thought you had with the above shall be considered null and void.
<< end of organizational belief statement >>
I’m guessing Biologos won’t be inspired to add any of this into their existing statements of beliefs. I’m not so sure about other organizations, though. Indeed, I’ve been more the recipient of inspiration here than a source of it.