Everything old is new again

It’s a new year, and that means the Anabaptist “Sip of Scripture” series with a focus on mission is over.

The theme for 2007 are verses that appear as scriptures supporting the Confession of Faith from a Mennonite Perspective, which was passed by the uniting Mennonite Church. In fact, the Sip of Scripture series started in March, 2002 with the same scriptures. I’m glad that the Third Way Cafe has decided to return to the Confession of Faith verses for their 2007 theme.

I (Will Fitzgerald) would like to do my portion of this weblog a little differently at this point. For my daily commentary, I would like to mostly point out the connection between the day’s verse and its section from the Confession of Faith.  In addition, I would like to write a longer essay every once in a while–every week or so, say–about a major point from the Confession of Faith.

There are twenty-four sections in the Confession of Faith (links are to the online version at mennonlink):

  1. God
  2. Jesus Christ
  3. Holy Spirit
  4. Scripture
  5. Creation and Divine Providence
  6. The Creation and Calling of Human Beings
  7. Sin
  8. Salvation
  9. The Church of Jesus Christ
  10. The Church in Mission
  11. Baptism
  12. The Lord’s Supper
  13. Foot Washing
  14. Discipline in the Church
  15. Ministry and Leadership
  16. Church Order and Unity
  17. Discipleship and the Christian Life
  18. Christian Spirituality
  19. Family, Singleness, and Marriage
  20. Truth and the Avoidance of Oaths
  21. Christian Stewardship
  22. Peace, Justice, and Nonresistance
  23. The Church’s Relation to Government and Society
  24. The Reign of God

As is noted in the Introduction to the Confession, these fall into four sets:

The first eight Articles (1-8) deal with themes common to the faith of the wider Christian church. The second set (Articles 9-16) deals with the church and its practices, and the third set (Articles 17-23) with discipleship. The final article (24) is on the reign of God.

I think the Confession is a good introduction to Christian and Anabaptist belief, and I hope I can do it, and our beliefs, justice through this year.