I was born into a "Methodist" household and obeyed the gospel at age 15 after I studied it for myself. Were I interested in tradition, I would have remained a Methodist as most of my family had been for 100+ years.

Then, after having gone through the colleges and schools of mainstream churches of Christ, had I been interested in traditions, I would have remained among them. After all, many told me "churches of Christ have always supported orphan homes, so if you are 'Church of Christ' then you support orphan homes." But again, I went contrary to tradition and opposed those things and was told by those who were in favor of such that I was now an "anti."

Since taking a stand on the institutional question 20 years ago, I have taken unpopular stands on many other issues.. not because it was fun, or popular, or TRADITIONAL, but because I studied them for myself and came to that conclusion... but then suddenly I find myself accused by many brethren that are also opposed to the practice of institutionalism of being a "traditionalist." If someone wants to say I am wrong on a question or issue, that is fine, but to throw around the term "traditionalist" is simply an easy moniker to hang on someone to blow them off. Not unlike saying someone is a nerd, or a flake. Now, if someone takes a position only because that's the way they were raised, or that's what mom and dad said, then certainly that is a traditionalist, Matt 15:2. Some may even attend the right group and practice the right things... not necessarily because they studied it out, but because they were raised that way... and if mom and dad had been Baptist, they would be Baptist too.

Brethren, why is it that if someone comes to the same conclusion that some others have through ones own study that it makes one a "traditionalist?" Since the non-traditionalists among us seem to take pride in admitting that we may be wrong on some things, then isn't it just possible that one thing they may be wrong on is that the ones they call traditionalists may just be right?

There is a tradition I am concerned with however; 2The 3:6 But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he received from us.

Wayne Goforth
North Park church of Christ Abilene, TX

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