Donald Grey Barnhouse once said that "all of life illustrates Bible doctrine".
I have recently grasped this principle in an experiential way after becoming involved in my latest pasttime/obsession; bootleg trading.
For the uninformed, bootlegs are rare recrdings, unavailable for the most part to the public, of various bands' live recordings, demos. outtakes, etc...
Most tapes are made by someone sneaking a recorder into a venue and taping a live show. While record labels frown upon this for the most part, some bands, most notably the Black Crowes, Dave Matthews Band, Mettallica, Phish, and The Grateful Dead welcome taping and often set up special sections in the crowd for tapers.
There is loosely knit network of traders around the country who communicate via the internet; and trade tapes, videos, cd-r's etc... of their favorite bands; and while doing this lately I have observed some interesting paralells between this little network and the Church.
Firstly, within the trading community there is a common purpose that bids us together; the love of music.
This is very much like the Church, where the love of Christ binds believers together with a common purpose and goal.
Secondly, special kindnesses are shown to those of like mind. In the trading community, "bonus tracks" may be put on the end of a tape to fill up some blank space. Just that "little extra" to make the deal a little sweeter.
In the Church we are called to go the "extra mile", and to show special affection to those within the body of Christ.
Thirdly, there is excitement over what we Have to offer. Traders love it when they have a great recording of a great show to share. They want to get it into as many hands as possible.
Friendly traders will often bend over backward to make a deal because they are excited about what they have to give.
As christians, we are also excited (we should be anyway) about the gift of salvation that we have to share with others. Actually, it's God's free gift to sinners; we're just the middle men in the transaction. We love to pass this gift on to others.
Ephesians GIFT OF gOD
Fourthly, we must beware of "bad traders". There are many scam artists that rip off unwitting traders. You send your tape, money, or whatever, and nothing ever comes in return. It's a one way transaction. Communication breaks down and the bad trader is never heard from again. Luckily we have interactive message boards and such to warn other traders.
In the church we have our own version of the bad trader; he called the "false teacher". They are our rip-off artists. Many of them are filthy rich, profiting from the false doctrines and manipulative tactics which they use to deceive unlearned and undiscerning church members.
This is why we have apologetics and counter-cult ministries; to combat these negative forces within the church and to warn sincere believers.
Does all of life illustrate Bible doctrine? Yes. Is this a profound article? No, but I thought it was kind of interesting and I hope that you did too.
By the way, Wanna Trade???
A Look At Our First Six Months
(My testimony of sorts...