Saturday, March 20, 2004
As Nathan, an alumni on Nav staff here at Tech put it, guys only ever experience one feeling: "weird." Afraid to do something? Weird. Stomach upset? Weird. Madly in love? Weird. We're either fine or we feel weird. Pretty simple, actually.
I did have a weird feeling this evening, though. Every week, all the Nav Bible Study leaders (in theory, at least...) get together for instruction, sharing triumphs and disappointments, talking about how are studies are progressing, and all. I already knew that I have some doctrinal differences with our director, who is non-denominational but is more-or-less Southern Baptist. I'm fully aware that I'm well on the "Catholic" fringe of Navigators. Most of our people are non-denominational, Baptist, or Presbyterian, often with Charismatic influences. Well, I also learned this evening that I'm the only leader (at least, of those who attended) who doesn't believe in "Once Saved, Always Saved." I'm sorry, but to me, a plain reading of Scripture simply doesn't support the idea. However, this is at least the second time where those present have asserted that OSAS is doctrine, and implied that anyone who disagrees is very definitely mistaken. Ironically enough, the only other person who even expressed doubts about whether Salvation can be lost is a Presbyterian.
I have to say that I was getting a little bit upset; not least because I quite simply don't buy the argument that the Scripture argues for, much less clearly argues for, OSAS. My response to the idea is literally "you must be joking." What got me, though, wasn't that others disagreed with me, or even really that pretty much all of them disagreed with me (had I been at a meeting of the Lutheran, Methodist, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, or Episcopalian ministries, it's quite possible that breakdown would've been the opposite way). What got to me was that something as contentious as this, which hasn't really been satisfactorily resolved, was brushed so lightly aside, with those on one side utterly marginalized. It pissed me off. There was a point where I quite simply considered walking out. I like Navs because it's a serious ministry, but I've lately been getting sick of what I regard as either mysteries or outright heresies being promoted. However, there's not really anywhere else for me to go.