Just a thought to posit to anyone who cares. As some of you may know, the Presbyterian Church (USA) recently decided that an ordaining body within the church (i.e., the Presbytery in the case of ordaining ministers, the session in the case of ordaining elders or deacons) may allow a candidate for ordination to express a "scruple" to any particular part of the ordination requirements. In other words, if someone who is a candidate for ordination says that they simply cannot accept one of the beliefs in the church Constitution that ministers, elders or deacons are supposed to believe, the ordaining body has the discretion to ordain them anyway.
My question is this: Should any ordaining body allow the ordination of someone who does not accept the full humanity and the full divinity of Christ? My answer is "no". This is one belief that absolutely must be held beyond scruple. There have to be some basic provisions that identify what is a "Christian Church".
You can use any other religion for the purpose of this illustration, but I will use Islam. Suppose a Muslim comes into your church and says, "I want to become a member, but I don't accept Christ as my Lord and Savior and I want to continue in my Islamic beliefs." Are you going to allow that person membership in the church? I would hope the answer is "no", but once you say that, you are acknowledging that there must be certain fundamental truths that distinguish what is a "Christian" church and that those truths are "beyond scruple."
I understand not wanting to make a "laundry list" of "essential tenets" so that we are welcoming Christ's children into the church instead of dividing ourselves based upon small details (on which people could have honest theological differences). But there are a few basic truths that we cannot be afraid to acknowledge. Even Christ said "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." He was very exclusive when it comes to how we can come to the Father.
If the divinity of Christ is one belief that defines what it means to be "Christian", and I believe it is, then the people who are shepherding God's flock must not only personally acknowledge it to be true, but must also acknowledge that it is beyond scruple so that they will not compromise on this point in their teaching. After all, they are responsible for sending God's people out into the world to bring others to Christ. If those people do not believe Christ was wholly man and wholly God, are they really bringing people to the true Christ?