I've just heard yet another institution described in all too familiar terms:
"Don't get me wrong, their theology is straight down the line. They're faithful, biblical, solid, orthodox, sound as a pound. You couldn't fault them on their teaching... It's just... Well, they're not very loving. In fact they're pretty closed. Cold even. Harsh actually. Come to think of it they're some of the most hard hearted people I've ever met."
This is horrendously common. What do we reckon is a good response?
My immediate reaction is: Where *are* these total-gospel Christians with diamond-hard hearts? What kind of gospel must this be? How could 'solid, orthodox, faithful' theology produce loveless believers? Do we really think they've got their theology right, they just *happen* to be bearing no gospel fruit?
And what remedy would we propose for such cool-headed, cold-hearted Christians? Do we assume that they already know the gospel and therefore need to be inspired to love via other means? What means?
No. Next time you hear someone say "He/She/They are solid theologically, they're just not loving", say "Pish, Tosh, Codswallop, Bunkum and Balderdash!"
They *cannot* be solid theologically. Maybe once they were. Maybe their reputation still resounds around the world. But their gospel is revealed far more clearly in their lives than in some abstract credal conformity.
Don't dare concede to such people that 'they're cold but still sound.' No, you've smelt the stench, now hunt down the source. It'll go all the way to the core of their allegedly orthodox theology.
It'll take a root and branch reformation to sort out this lot. But don't settle for anything less.