The Path We Take – By Howard Miller

Chapter 2

Explanation Introduction

This little book comes from my pen by sheer necessity — that of a real concern I have carried for a long time. I am so anxious that our church shall take the path that God has intended we should. It is not an easy path, and there are some rough byways on which we could find ourselves if we are not both cautious and sincerely alert. Obviously these words are directed to Nazarenes, although I would be happy if they should find their way into the hands of people of like precious faith; for I presume that our dangers are more or less common. The dangers of the Church of Jesus Christ today are fundamentally the same as in the yesterdays, and it would be tragic if we should be foolhardy or presumptive enough to ignore the lessons of history. THE PATH WE TAKE as a church now is determining the service we render tomorrow. H. V. Miller

In this pamphlet General Superintendent Miller has brought some very important matters to our attention. The chief emphasis is upon the significance of conduct for the Nazarene Christian. He never can think of his way of life as incidental. The General Rules in our Manual make this clear. They represent the collective conscience of the Church of the Nazarene, and are never to betaken lightly. Further, any church which majors on Christian experience must hold up a high standard of living. Again, a church whose main business is to spread scriptural holiness cannot disregard ethics without being caught in the mesh of worldliness.

On the other hand, there is personal scruple or conviction — for which Doctor Miller clearly argues. Every Christian must have this area which is obligatory for him; but it can easily pass into legalism or Pharisaism if he insists on making it hold for every other member of the Church of the Nazarene. We cannot have regimentation or standardization in a church along with a religion that is based on personal experience and guidance. This would tend toward totalitarianism rather than democracy. It seems to me that in this booklet Doctor Miller has set before us the right way: a way that will keep us in the middle of the road — away from worldliness on the one hand, and legalism on the other.

Stephen S. White