Many will still say that there is no pattern or that any pattern is just a loose guide to be adjusted on the needs of the day.
But they really don’t mean that. They mean there is no pattern they wish to follow, no pattern in a gospel that they do not follow and have not sanctioned; and that there is not pattern of things that must be done – for works of any kind. These follow after the doctrines of men and insist that there is primarily nothing much to be done to become a Christian and that are no “works” that must be accomplished in order to please God. They throw everything they define as works into the same basket — and accept nothing given in God’s book unless it suits them.
Thereby most of the Christian religion is based on willful ignorance. If we do not know God’s Word, if we do not seek to do God’s will, we thereby make up our own religion, based upon what we think is acceptable and will be received by the God of heaven. Then we are also out on our own, without the sanction of heaven.
Nothing new here — the Jews in the days of Jesus and the apostles had done the exact same thing.
Romans 10:1 — 3:
“Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they, being ignorant of God’s righteousness and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”
So not much has changed.
This leads to a primary question for examination: Did Israel lack a pattern? Did they not have the Law of Moses, the same books from which we have read in these essays? It should be obvious that today’s denominations are in no different situation. Do they not possess a pattern? They each have the same books to reference and study. The pattern is still around and it has not changed. Yet, collectively we are mostly ignorant of it, and then have gone about seeking to establish our own righteousness. We have therefore, for the greater part, not submitted ourselves to the righteousness of God.