There is nothing wrong with being confessional, unless you live in areas like Moscow. Surprisingly, the American West seems dead set against confessionalism. Of course the West would be opposed to confessionalism, according to a Gallup poll, the West has the most non-believers in America – even compared to the East.
What is confessionalism? It is Christianity, pure and simple. It is the literal and full agreement of the Bible and its teachings. If one is confessional, one is truly Christian. Confessionalism keeps Christ at the center, holding fast to the text of the Bible and professing its true teachings without shame, fear or excuse.
Some might call this fundamentalism, and many decry it, even within the realms of Christianity. I have seen many within my own church that rail against confessionalism, even though the teachings come directly from Scripture and do not teach new or strange doctrine.
This is a major problem in many Moscow churches.Of course, the same people crying out against confessionalism are the same people who water down the Bible and teach their own version of it to appeal to and grow congregations.
These people sadly do not seek the truth of God or the Bible, but a lie which will allow them to follow in their own misguided desires and put them in good terms with the world. People may be brought in with this tactic and congregations may grow, but they are growing on shaky foundations.
For the longest time, America has had to endure this watered-down and doctrinally removed type of teaching, from the First Great Awakening onward. That form of preaching continues today – riddled with emotional ecstasy that defies the teachings of Christ.
Worship services have followed in kind, having become the outlet for our own personal desires in church. Liturgy has practically been tossed out the window in exchange for something to make people feel good. There are some churches which hardly, if at all, practice confession and absolution. Many say confessionalism is just too uncomfortable for people to practice, but those are just excuses.
There is a clear and desperate need in Moscow to return to true Christianity. With the increase of non-religious people in America, the need to teach the Gospel in its truth and purity has become more pressing. There should be no hiding from what the Scriptures teach, whether it be about sin or the grace of God.
The problem is, we tend to get wrapped up in ourselves and forget where the real focus lies. Don’t be afraid to be named confessional or fundamental. Christians should be fundamentalists in the first place, as deviance leads to false doctrine and practice. There is nothing to be ashamed of when one is staying true to the word of God.
Andrew Jenson can be reached at email@example.com