If everyone participates in the gatherings of the church then how do we avoid people teaching heresy? That seems to be a common question posed to me about every member participation. It is a good question, and it makes sense. The problem is that I believe it is based on some faulty assumptions. I will discuss these over the next few days.
A third faulty assumption that I think drives this concern is that the gathering of the church is a stage and audience setting rather than a communal setting. What is the danger in someone teaching something wrong? Is it not possible to correct that person or dialogue with that person about what they have said? When the church gathering is viewed in modern terms it is not possible or comfortable to dialogue with the person teaching because they stand at the front on stage or at the pulpit and everyone else faces them and listens to them. The environment and the mentality is not of conversation and openness, it is, like I said, of (passive) audience and (active) stage. I do not fear when I sit around my living room with a couple of friends that they will say something wrong because I know that we can dialogue about the subject.