Wednesday, November 26, 2014

"All creatures are effects which declare a first cause. All finite existence, whether natural or moral, is the product of omnipotent power. The great wheels of Divine providence are turned round by the hand of God. The motions of our souls and bodies are alike directed by the agent of him who rolls the stars along."
- Rev. Lemuel Haynes, "Outline of a Sermon on Acts 26:22," Black Preacher to White America: The Collected Writings of Lemuel Haynes, 1774-1833, edited by Richard Newman (Brooklyn, NY: Carlson Publishing Inc.,), p. 233. Preached in 1833 when almost 80 years old in Granville, Massachusetts.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Loving Success...

"To love our success more than God and our neighbor hardens the heart, making us less able to feel and to sense."
- Timothy Keller, Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

"I don't do Facebooks": The Gospel Message and Relevance in Society

This morning I listened to a Christian radio station on the way to work. The program covered the recent elections, and the radio host, a "pro-family" conservative, made some interesting comments as he interviewed a number of people.

I had only listened to the program for about 15 minutes or so when something in the interview came up about Facebook. In response, this radio host said, "I don't do Facebooks." Not, "I am not on Facebook," or "I do not post on Facebook." His attitude was arrogant, and his choice of words showed his ignorance about the society he is supposed to be influencing.

This was not the Apostle Paul's attitude. For example, I Corinthians 9:19-23 is a good passage written by Paul about influencing people for the Gospel. He said,

"For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them...I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some...". (English Standard Version)

I think the Apostle Paul would post on Facebook today if it meant reaching others for Christ.

This attitude is important because the current political situation in the United States is an expression of its culture, for good and for bad. It has been said that, "politics is downstream from culture." This is true.

It is also important to remember that Christians can and do disagree about politics. I hold that there is no one political ideology that is universally "Christian." However, the Gospel certainly can make many political ideologies better by helping us to view all humans as image bearers of God. So, if a Christian wants to positively influence politics, he or she should focus on explaining the Gospel in terms and with means relevant to people in that society.

Presently, how can anyone influence society politically in the United States, especially generations younger than 50 years old, by "not doing Facebooks" ? In my view, this radio host basically said that he was irrelevant to society, that he was only preaching to the choir, so to say.

And we wonder why people hold the values and vote the way they do!