By Rob Albright
Paul told the church in Thessalonica to “hold to the traditions which you were taught” (2 Thess. 2:15). What traditions was he talking about?
It is important to know that there are two different kinds of traditions. HUMAN traditions can be good or bad. It depends on how you use them. A human tradition is just a way of doing something over a period of time. A human tradition is something that can be changed. Meeting together on Sunday at 11 A.M. can be changed to 10 A.M. without violating any Biblical teaching. The same can be said about the number of songs we sing in our assemblies and the number of prayers offered.
The other kind of tradition is DIVINE. This is the kind of tradition Paul was talking about in our text above. This is the kind of tradition that has been handed down through the generations by the inspired writers of the Bible. If we choose to change divine tradition we are disorderly (2 Thess. 3:6). Divine traditions teach us what God wants in His church.
So, following the traditions of the New Testament for our pattern for faith and practice is a good thing. Following the blueprint given by God for building our Christian life and worshiping God is a good thing.
Also, understanding the difference between and human tradition a divine tradition will go a long way in “keeping the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (Eph. 4:2).
- Rob Albright serves as one of the ministers at the Northwest Church of Christ in Greensboro, NC. He may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://www.nwchurchofchrist.com/