Mon Jan 4-Ecumenical Unity 1

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2 Timothy 3:16, 4:2 (CEB)

16 Every scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for showing mistakes, for correcting, and for training character,

Preach the word. Be ready to do it whether it is convenient or inconvenient. Correct, confront, and encourage with patience and instruction.


An important element to teaching our Sunday School classes at MUMC is the Wesleyan Quadrilateral (WQ) and how the four tenants of Scripture; Tradition; Reason; and Experience were developed through the Methodist teachings. The phrase, which has relatively recently come into use to describe the principal factors that John Wesley believed, illuminate the core of the Christian faith for the believer. (A Dictionary for United Methodists, Alan K. Waltz, Copyright 1991)

Wesley did not formulate the succinct statement now commonly referred to as the Wesley Quadrilateral, but those four tenants helped me when I gave each of my Sunday School students their chance to solve a common problem using elements of the WQ. One common trouble the students experienced was – not wanting to promptly accomplish tasks our parents ask us to do – like take out the trash!  Scripture: Honor your Father and Mother, Exodus 20:12.

16th century German theologian, Martin Luther, based The Protestant Reformation on Sola Scriptura, meaning “By Scripture Alone”. Other traditions, like Methodism with it’s WQ understanding, believe in Prima Scriptura, meaning that scripture comes first amongst other sources. Most of us are familiar with Paul’s letter to Timothy about how important God’s Word is for instruction; conviction of sin; correction of error; and training in righteousness.  All these help us learn to live in conformity to God’s will in each of our lives.

Take using scripture to understand our priorities in what we asked for last Christmas (NO guilt!). We usually speak about presents that they’ve seen on TV or the internet that may only make us happy for a short time.  Comparing paraphrases of Solomon’s wise words: All many of us do is for earthly enjoyment while our soul’s desire is not satisfied (Ecclesiastes 6:7, Proverbs 16:26).

By Brian Harriet

For Pondering & Prayer

Think about what someone asked you to help with that you didn’t want to. What scriptures were you drawn to that helped you be more selfless? Will those scriptures continue to benefit you in the future?

Prayer: Lord we know that delay in what we want, or what we should do promptly, is often the test and the strength of our faith. Help us to stay in Your Word and use it to learn, see and correct our mistakes, and become more like your precious Son, Jesus the Christ.  Amen.

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