And he said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.”
-Matthew 13:44, 52(ESV)
Diversity or Division?
There are many differences in in all the peoples of the earth. Sometimes we call other people who are different than us names. We name them and those names are often derogatory or negative, disrespectful, degrading, pejorative, or humiliating. People like to call other people names who are different. In case you needed to be told, doing this is sinful
Sometimes people nick-name other people who are different, purely out of a need to describe them. Many things that the Europeans brought to America were probably very peculiar to the Native Americans, for example
Many Native American tribes learned the value of eating tree bark. There are usually three layers of bark, before the wood and layers two and three are very edible and very nutritious. I imagine that most people I know do not and never have eaten tree bark. But survivalists know all about it.
Hidden Treasures From God
There are many hidden treasures that Christians have discovered and rediscovered. Various Christian groups have made discoveries and celebrated that treasure and made that treasure an emphasis of their Christian culture. There are hundreds and even thousands of emphases that different Christian groups have.
Hidden Treasure Can Save Your Life
Eating tree bark is like a hidden treasure. Trees were almost everywhere in the New World of the North-East of what is now the United States. The European explorers or pilgrims were sometimes malnourished or starving, and there were the trees, all around them; and little did they know that eating these trees could heal scurvy and give them food.
Crossing Boundaries to Receive From The Other
When they crossed over and started communicating with the very different native peoples, the treasure of the tree bark was given to them. It is the same way in the whole church, the Body of Christ. We need the treasures that others have discovered. What you lack, another group has discovered. You must cross lines to get it.
Descriptive or Pejorative Name Calling
Many Native Americans discovered and practiced the eating of tree bark. They were called 'Adirondack' by the Mohawk tribe. The Mohawks were different than the bark eating tribes, in that they spoke a different language. The various Native American tribes had many differences and had wars against each other. We don't know (I don't know) if the Mohawks used 'Adirondack' as a purely descriptive term or if it was derogative.
Adirondack also can mean 'Porcupine' in Mohawk, because Porcupines also eat tree bark. Christian fellowship is sometimes like porcupines. We draw near, but then we hurt each other with all our prickly spines.
Some Are Dying For The Treasure That Others Have
Like the Europeans that came to a new land, who brought all of their European knowledge, but some of whom were sick and dying from malnourishment that they had no cure for; we also need the treasures that have been found by and deposited by God, in other groups, tribes, movements, or denominations.
Old and New Treasure
Jesus remarked that those who already were teachers or knowledgeable of The Torah or the Old Testament, could and should become disciples or learners of the secrets of the Kingdom of God. Jesus calls us to hold onto the old and discover the new. The whole Bible, including the whole Old Testament is His-Story! The challenge with new treasure it to integrate or harmonize it with the old Treasure.
Reinventing the Wheel
When we are sectarian, we tend to not look outside for help and are even suspicious of people outside our tribe. So, when we decide to move into a new dimension of ministry, we "reinvent the wheel". As you can imagine, our wheel will not be as good as the wheels out there that other groups have been using with good function for years or decades or longer.
Jesus is The Wheel That Connects the Whole Church
The center or hub of the wheel for all Christians is Christ, and all the tribes, groups, movements, networks, or denominations are spokes that go out to the surface of the wheel, where it meets the ground of the world, which is the great co-mission of Christ and his church..
The treasure that another, different tribe, in the church, has is in Christ. They got it from Christ and Christ can give it to you, through them. It is the same Christ, but different people, and they could be very different from you; but they have a unique gift.... for you, if you will cross over and receive it. One last thing. Jesus is the bridge to them for you. You cross over in Christ.