Dear Unscriptural Committee
Martin refuses to sign a statement of faith
(In conjunction with "Dear Fence-Straddler")
Dear Unscriptural Committee
From: Martin Zender
To: ARCHE Committee (Ashton Regional Christian Home Educators)
Subject: Membership Rejection
The evidence of a Christian life is fruit, not adherence to doctrine. This
fruit is not of man, but the result of God’s spirit. The fruits are nine in
number, and Paul details them in Galatians 5:22-23: "Now the fruit of the
spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
meekness, self-control: against such things there is no law."
The God of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has brought forth this fruit in
my life. Any who know me, my wife and my three children, can testify to the
presence of this fruit in my home. For twelve years, our home has been grounded
and built on the foundation of Christ. Apart from Christ, there is no
foundation; against this fruit, there is no law. According to the Scriptures,
there is no higher standard for Christian fellowship than a confession of Jesus
Christ as Lord and the presence of spiritual fruit. Paul wrote to Timothy:
"Pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace, with all who are invoking the
Lord out of a clean heart" (2 Tim. 2:22).
Yet now, your executive committee has made it clear that these Scriptural
standards for fellowship will not suffice. The executive committee has chosen to
impose a higher standard for fellowship than that imposed by Scripture. Now,
apart from spiritual fruit, apart from faith in Christ, apart from invoking the
Lord out of a clean heart, the executive committee has refused to pursue either
righteousness, faith, love or peace with anyone who will not sign a legal
document, written by a man, containing not one quotation from the Scriptures.
I quit my job with the postal service last October for three reasons 1) to
upgrade my moral life 2) to better edify my believing household, and 3) to toil
in and teach the Word of God. In Paul’s day, I would have been a supervisor in
the ecclesia of God (1 Tim. 3:17), worthy of double honor (1 Tim. 5:17). In this
day of the apostasy of the church (2 Thess. 2:3), I am denied membership to a
"Christian" education group.
I search carefully my letter of rejection, looking for the words,
"Christ," "God," "Spirit," "Holy
Spirit," "Body of Christ," "love." I find none of them.
Instead I find "executive committee," "document,"
"basic tenant," "protects us legally," "legal point of
view," "state and national leaders," "legally sound,"
"legally open," "the courts," "elected
leadership," and "legal battles."
The executive committee, in its own words, wishes to protect itself from
"unscriptural influences," yet, in straining at gnats, it has
swallowed a camel. Re-read the preceding paragraph and ask yourselves, in the
privacy of your own heart, what you have become. The executive committee,
apparently, neither understands what a Christian is, nor possess the boldness,
courage and knowledge to defend scriptural truth before the tribunals of men.
The group should be called ARLSHE: Ashton Regional Legally Sound Home Educators,
for that they surely are.