We can change the title of the blog if we so want. For now I chose the title "Truth" for very obvious and understandable reasons. After a discussion with ירמיה I wanted to help us focus our discussions with other people. My conversations with ליש over the past few years focused on issues of culture and a desire to create a new and authentic culture for us, and hopefully for our future families. As our discussions progressed we gravitated to more serious matters, mainly issues of truth.
Jewish vs. Christian
I have noticed that too often I, and we, are drawn into discussions in which we contrast Judaism and Christianity. This comparison can lead to confusion because it's mixing two separate, yet related issues. First and foremost we have issues of truth. Secondly, there are issues of culture.
There are many issues, particularly dealing with the way we understand God and our interaction with Him, with which I disagree. It just so happens that these ideas have been developed within Christianity. But my problem is not that they are Christian ideas, but rather I don't think they are Biblically based. (In a later post I'll write about a few.) This distinction is crucial and it would solidify our stance. There will still be misunderstandings (as with Copernicus many don't grasp that the point is evaluating the Biblical texts), but we can at least do our part in being clearer. Hopefully this would help people understand we are not trying to attack Christians (even though we do have major issues with Christian theology).
There are other issues, however, that are more cultural ,such as style of music. I think the understanding of music and it's role in the "service" is a matter of truth, but the style is cultural. The point here is very basic. If I'm going to chose a cultural style it makes the most sense to choose my own culture, which for some reason doesn't seem to be fully grasped in MJ congregations. Or perhaps it points to the fact that they believe X cultural is there own. I personally don't have a problem with organ music, for example, but I also don't think it is appropriate in a Jewish service (any Reforms Jews listening?). The same goes for Michael W. Smith.