Remembering Who We Are: Duane W.H. Arnold, PhD

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21 Responses

  1. Michael says:

    This, to me, is the real crisis in the church.

    We have sublet our identity to myriad other things and we are not what we were called and created to be.

    I’m not sure that many even understand what our true identity is, let alone our function…

  2. Duane Arnold says:


    There is a need to again think in terms of theology – not politics, not sociology, not national identity, not pollsters, not business management, not entertainment and all the rest… That is, if we’ve not forgotten what thinking theologically means.

  3. Em says:

    Was listening yesterday to a Pastor explain that the emotional need to speak in tongues lessens our understanding of the role of the Holy Spirit in the Believers life….

  4. Duane Arnold says:


    While I have a number of charismatic friends, I think it is unfortunate that the work of the Holy Spirit in the Church has too often been reduced to the exercise of charismatic gifts… There is so much more.

  5. Em says:

    Amen, DR Duane, amen!
    P.S. I also have friends among the charismatics….. They seem to think that if you don’t have a “tongue” you probably are not a REAL Christian…. sad

  6. bob1 says:

    I’ve known various charismatics and Pentecostals most of my life.

    I don’t remember any of these folks questioning one’s salvation
    WRT speaking in tongues. I did have a college roommate who was
    Pentecostal and with him, it was, “you’re a second-class Christian
    if you don’t experience the BOTHS.” I found it annoying (and
    biblically inaccurate), but I knew he just wanted what he believed
    was best for me.

  7. Duane Arnold says:

    bob 1

    I agree. I also think there is a bit of a “generational split” among charismatics I know with regard to the emphasis on charismatic gifts…

  8. Michael says:

    All this talk of charismatics misses the point.
    The Holy Spirit empowers me not to speak in tongues or prophecy, but to live the Christian life and follow the hard path behind Jesus.
    I am doing a lot of things I would rather not do and life is difficult more often than not.

    By myself I couldn’t keep going…with Christ all things are possible.

  9. Duane Arnold says:

    “…the Church is a theological reality by which the Holy Spirit makes Christ known. It is, or should be, the embodiment of Christ and the harbinger of a new age…”

    Not sure that everyone has gotten the memo…

  10. filistine says:

    Excellent. A clear, concise statement of our place in the food chain. The Holy Spirit has been the water boy for too many believers who see themselves as the star quarterback or the powerful sideline coach. The passage that echoed as I read this article was “Grieve not the Holy Spirit, by whom you are sealed until the day of redemption.”

  11. Duane Arnold says:


    You got it…

  12. Dread says:

    I’m never quite sure what exactly the sin of culture warrior is though it’s often evoked here. The Catholic Bishop may have the sense of what you mean by banning Nancy Pelosi from communion for invoking her Catholicism as a basis for her aggressive abortion politics. Perhaps that captures the anathema you invoke.

  13. pstrmike says:

    Well said Duane. Understanding who we are—and I think the Creeds along with the New Testament establish that identity—should also help us identify what we are not.

    Identity should produce stability, that is, we understand the path we are on and attempt to go deeper rather than wider. Benedict understood this. Part of the problem with the church today is the lack of understanding of who they are, have not gone deeper in that spiritual expression.

    The priority of people gets lost in the priority of mission, programs, and maintaining the established framework. Paul instructed us that our work of ministry, whatever it is, is a priestly function, an offering to be accepted and sanctified by the Holy Spirit (Romans 15). Remembering this is a first step toward a deeper, Spirit dependent life and ministry.

  14. Duane Arnold says:


    I’ll take the Oxford Dictionary definition… “a person who is active in trying to protect a particular culture or set of values that they think is under threat, especially conservative political values in the US”.

  15. Duane Arnold says:


    Good insight on the role of stability… Giving that one some thought!

  16. Dread says:

    Of course only conservatives can sin.

  17. Duane Arnold says:


    “The Church, in this understanding, is not a political or sociological entity. It is not a training ground for culture warriors. Rather, the Church is a theological reality by which the Holy Spirit makes Christ known.”

    Not sure that I see “sin” mentioned.

  18. Em says:

    Pastor Dread, I caught the irony of your 10:32

  19. Michael says:

    The issue is not with conservatives or liberals politically.

    The issue is enveloping party politics with the faith.

    Because my faith informs how I feel about secular matters, I cannot vote for either party in good conscience.

  20. Dread says:

    My mistake Professor

    Clearly your meaning is that the culture warriors are ‘missing the mark.’

  21. Duane Arnold says:


    Nope, the Church “is not a training ground for culture warriors.” It’s pretty straight forward….

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