From a Letter to a Friend by S. M. Hutchens


From a Letter to a Friend

"I must tell you that even though my degree is in theology, I'm rarely in the mood to discuss theological subjects, which is usually more like trying to clean up messes than reveling in truth. Heaven will need theologians no more than lawyers, trash collectors, or traffic engineers, for it is built upon the pure logos of God, by the suffusion of whose light all is seen and laid in order.

"There is also this inhibition: on any theological question worth thinking about I am a very, very slow thinker. The 'questions worth thinking about' are the ones that divide the Christian communions, the ones in which their great, difficult and defining men labor, take refuge, and gain notability. From where I am privileged to stand, however, I believe I can see signs on the far horizon of movement toward agreement in the Lord (which in fact already exists, but is hard to see in this atmosphere) among those who (1) are willing to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints, (2) are committed, whatever the cost, to reject what opposes or obscures it, and (3) have the strong desire—a desire that requires the humility to be -unimportant—to be reconciled to one's brethren. We mark as 'fundamentalist' the cast of mind that has the first two without the last, while mainline ecumenism and Evangelicalism of the world-pleasing variety have only a compromised version of the third."

S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.

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