the weblog of Alan Knox

Chain Blog: Dealing with Divisive Issues Introduction

Posted by on Jun 20, 2011 in chain blog, unity | 18 comments

Chain Blog: Dealing with Divisive Issues Introduction

Last Friday, I proposed that we start a new chain blog. (If you don’t know what a chain blog is, you can read the info in my post “Let’s start a new chain blog,” or you can keep reading below for more info.)

In that post, several issues were suggested, but most people seem to have been interested in the following topic: dealing practically with traditionally divisive issues.

So, in this post, I’m going to introduce the topic, and propose a few ways that bloggers can continue this chain blog. Note, however, that anyone can continue this chain blog with a post dealing with this topic – and it is a very broad but also very important topic.

I would like to set a few boundaries for this discussion however. As I noted in the post above, I am interested in topics dealing with the church. So, for this chain blog, I am asking people to write about dealing with divisive issues among the church – that is, issues that have traditionally divided brothers and sisters in Christ from one another. While it might be interesting and important to consider what issues should and do divide followers of Jesus Christ from those who do not follow him, that will not be the purpose of this chain blog.

Also, this chain blog is not the medium for defending your position on a divisive topic. For example, we know that eschatology (what happens at the end of times) is a divisive topic among believers, and various views of eschatology may be approached in this chain blog as examples. However, the chain blog is not the “time” or “place” to explain why you hold to a certain eschatological position. Instead, the point of the chain blog is to discuss how to deal with eschatological differences that often divide the church.

Here are a few questions that bloggers might consider in the posts that they write for this chain blog. But, like I said before, this list is not exhaustive:

Why should we care about divisiveness among the church?

Are their valid reasons to divide from other believers and what makes those reasons valid?

What are some historical reasons for division?

Does unity (lack of division) require agreement on all issues?

Are there different level of divisiveness? Why or why not?

What practical steps can be taken to overcome divisiveness?

What if a brother or sister in Christ is content with their divisiveness? (Or doesn’t see themselves as divisive?)

Hopefully, those questions will inspire someone to write the next post in this chain blog.

So, how does it work?

First, feel free to comment on this post as normal. You can leave any comment that you’d like.

However, if you want to write the next post in this chain blog (that is, the next “link” in the “chain” of posts), then be the first to leave a comment on this post saying that you want to write the next post. (If someone else has already claimed the next post, then simply wait to comment on that next post and say that you want to write the one following that. Okay?)

Then, the person who asks to write the next “link” in the “chain” should write a post in the next few days and leave a comment here with a link when that post has been published.

While comments and discussion can continue on this post, the chain will then jump to that next post and we will continue as I explained above. Hopefully, it will become clearer as we move forward.

If you write a post for the chain blog, you can title your post whatever you wan to call it. I simply ask that you include the rules of the chain blog (below) and a list of all the previous “links” in the chain blog.

So, here are rules in a format that is easy to copy and include in your posts:


Chain blog rules:

1) If you would like to write the next blog post (link) in this chain, leave a comment stating that you would like to do so. If someone else has already requested to write the next link, then please wait for that blog post and leave a comment there requesting to write the following link.

2) Feel free to leave comments here and discuss items in this blog post without taking part in the actual “chain”. Your comments and discussion are very important in this chain blog.

3) When you write a link in this chain, please reply in the comments of the previous post to let everyone know that your link is ready. Also, please try to keep an updated list of links in the chain at the bottom of your post, and please include these rules at the bottom of your post.


“Links” in this chain blog:

1. “Chain Blog: Dealing with Divisive Issues Introduction” by Alan
2. “Chain Blog: Dealing with divisive issues starts with love” by Arthur
3. “I am divisive” by Jeremy
4. “Chain Blog: Please agree with me” by Jon
5. “Division and our shared humanity” by Andy
6. “Chain Blog: solving the problem” by Bobby
7. “Divisiveness: Acts 2 & Ugly Carpet” by fallenpastor
8. “Stimulating our Collective Memory” by Trista
9. “No, we can’t just get along” by Alan
10. “Who says we are divided?” by Jon
11. “Disunity and the mind of Christ” by Fred
12. “We Are United in Our Division” by Andy
13. “Finding Equilibrium: ‘rest in one another’” by Sherry
14. “Don’t talk about my momma” by JRo
15. Who will write the next “link” post in the chain?


Comments are closed. If you would like to discuss this post, send an email to alan [at] alanknox [dot] net.

  1. 6-20-2011

    I will take the plunge and write the next post. I started thinking about this and was thinking that I would write about the first and necessary step in overcoming divisive issues, love.

  2. 6-20-2011


    Awesome! I’m looking forward to your post.

    Can you think of other subtopics within this topic that we should discuss?


  3. 6-20-2011

    Working on link 3 right now.

  4. 6-20-2011


    Great post! And you’re very fast!


    Make sure to leave a comment on Arthur’s post so everyone there knows that you’re working on the next post.


  5. 6-20-2011


    I posted a comment there letting him know I was working on it, and I have just posted the link.

    Here is the link for your comments here:

    The Post title is “I Am Divisive”

    It will get posted within the hour.

  6. 6-20-2011


    Wow! You and Arthur are super fast! I’m looking forward to reading your post.


  7. 6-21-2011

    I love this topic. I feel so united with you guys on this. I had to jump in. 🙂
    4. “Please Agree With Me” by Jon

  8. 6-21-2011

    Thanks Jon! You guys are writing them faster than I can read them. That’s awesome!


  9. 6-21-2011

    Hi Alan,

    I posted the next link in the chain on Jon’s blog. The link is:

    The title of the post is “Division and our Shared Humanity” and I take a look at how Genesis 1-3 can help inform us about how to understand and work through division.


  10. 6-22-2011


    Very good post, Andy! Thanks for taking part in the chain blog.


  11. 6-28-2011

    I’ve published the 9th link post in the chain blog here: “No, we can’t just get along.”


  12. 7-5-2011

    I will do one…haven’t read them all though so may be tomorrow before I can get on it and post.


  13. 7-5-2011


    Thanks! I’m looking forward to your post.

    Please leave a comment on the final post here so no one else starts the next post while you’re working on it too.


  14. 10-17-2011

    Are you reviving this or just posting it? I wonder because I think I might write a blog on it because its a very important issue since I believe it can sometimes mean the difference between life and death for a persons eternal soul. If its for that reason I would love to contribute.

  15. 10-17-2011


    I’m not planning to reopen this chain blog. But, feel free to write your own post on the topic. Remember that this chain blog was about divisive issue among Christians – that is, between people who you consider Christians despite any differences. Of course, you can write about whatever you want to write about.


  16. 5-15-2012

    Is this chain blog still open for a new link? I am new and just found the blog. Thanks!

  17. 5-15-2012


    No one has written for this chain blog since July 2011. However, if you want to write a post and copy the link here, I’ll be glad to add it to the list.



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