We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.2 Corinthians chapter 10, verses 3 thru 5; from the New Living Translation (NLT); emphasis mine
Some may think I am disqualified for saying anything about the United Methodist Church (UMC) because I left. If they want to think that way, feel free to do so. But I spend 66+ years in the Methodist/United Methodist Church. They had abandoned me long before I left them. And I have friends who still think it’s OK to stay in the UMC. Therefore, I am still qualified to speak into the 21st century version of the Titanic. And a recent article only affirmed that I was listening to The Holy Spirit in the choice and decision to leave the UMC.
On 8 February 2023, the United Methodist News Service shared an article by Rev. Taylor Burton-Edwards titled Using Our Brains: A Proposal for General Conference. He would have the delegates for the upcoming 2024 General Conference rely on their brains rather than good solid biblical and Holy Spirit inspired theology. Well, here’s some of what Rev. Burton-Edwards wrote:
How can next year’s General Conference make good decisions about the future of The United Methodist Church? I’d like to offer a perspective and several concrete suggestions about how to make sound decisions — and feel good about them — grounded in what neuroscience and neuropsychology have been discovering over the past several decades. There are two pairs of best practices in decision-making one can derive from this literature. One is about reducing: Reduce the number of options and stressors. The other is about building: Build consensus and satisfaction. The first two relate to how our brains are structured to help us make significant decisions about new or complicated situations (neuroscience). The second two relate to internal and external factors that can influence our ability to persevere through a difficult decision process and feel good about it when we’re done (neuropsychology). Attending to these best practices can set up the Charlotte meeting of General Conference in 2024 to deal successfully with perhaps the most momentous decisions it will have made since the Dallas meeting in 1968 that created The United Methodist Church.Rev Burton-Edwards
Don’t misunderstand me. I want the UMC to be healed and move forward in God’s Kingdom. It would fill me with Great Joy to see a revival break out like it has been happening at Asbury. His answer to the quagmire of the United Methodist Church is neuroscience and neuropsychology. When I read that, my brain went immediately to the Scarecrow from The Wizard Of Oz. If he only had a brain! Now, I’m not against thinking and using our brains. God knows I wish more people would! But to base the future of a church solely on the brain? And then expound that it will solve the spiritual problems and move them forward into a better future? Geez, Louise! It seems to me that brains without The Spirit is what led the UMC to this point in history.
Now, I am like an umpire or referee. I only call it like I see it. And here’s how I call it. Neuroscience and neuropsychology have become the Baal of the modern United Methodist Church. Did I offend someone? Oh, well. The Truth has a tendency to offend at times. This is one such time. To remain a United Methodist is to bow down to Baal–the Lord of neuroscience and neuropsychology, rather than The Lord Of Lords and King Of Kings. It’s replacing Jesus as the Head of the Body of Christ with the head of neuroscience.
Does anyone want to speculate on the final outcome if this madness continues? Without knowing it (but then again, maybe he did) John Wesley made this comment, and I will leave you with it:
I am not afraid that the people called Methodists should ever cease to exist either in Europe or America. But I am afraid lest they should only exist as a dead sect, having the form of religion without the power. And this undoubtedly will be the case unless they hold fast both the doctrine, spirit, and discipline with which they first set out.-John Wesley-