Heber13 wrote: ↑
26 Apr 2018, 23:30
I've been thinking....
Do you think it matters one way or another? It can be fun to talk about...but day to day life...does it matter?
I think it does matter in establishing a community identity and an individual place within that community. Being able to say "I'm a Christian" is a lot like being able to give the secret password for entry - it establishes you belong, and a few general specific common beliefs (for example, a shared knowledge/understanding of Jesus Christ - his work and ministry, a unique spiritual experience that brought a person trust in Jesus Christ as their personal savior). That is one of the reasons why other churches have a hard time seeing us as a Christian community - we don't have that same shared knowledge/understanding of specific circumstances, and we define a lot of other principles differently and put them in a different priority order.
I think it matters less than it used to because communities are no longer limited to locale - primarily due to the internet. This is good because it gives people who would normally be outcasts an environment where they can shine, be themselves, provide specialized informal life-skills training/tips, and have a special interest to be passionate about. It also means that the local communities need to change to be "relevant" - either by having an internet presence, adding items of interest to a diverse amount of people, and/or becoming more entertaining.
Churches seem to be some of the last to change in this area because they feel that they have the right from God not to change and that the organization sets the terms as revealed by God. For some people, the flavor of doctrine matters to a varying degree - everyone has faith narratives that accept and reject certain principles. I feel that the LDS church has made quite a few strides in these areas over the last 5 years, but that the LDS church is losing people because the doctrinal faith narrative of the church has not changed as much as the people have, and now points to principles that people reject and feel deeply are incorrect doctrines/teachings.