“The God of all grace…” —1 Peter 5:10
“By the Grace of God I am what I am.” This is the believer’s eternal confession. Grace found him a rebel—it leaves him a son. Grace found him wandering at the gates of hell—it leaves him at the gates of heaven. Grace devised the scheme of Redemption. Justice never would; Reason never could. And it is Grace which carries out that scheme. No sinner would ever have sought his God but “by grace.” The thickets of Eden would have proved Adam’s grave had not grace called him out. Saul would have lived and died the haughty self-righteous persecutor, had not grace laid him low. The thief on the cross would have continued breathing out his blasphemies, had not grace arrested his tongue and tuned it for glory. “Out of the knottiest timber,” says Rutherford, “He can make vessels of mercy for service in the high palace of glory!”
“AS YOU DID IT TO ONE OF THE LEAST OF THESE… YOU DID IT TO ME.” —MATTHEW 25:40
Truly serving the Lord is not glamorous, clean, comfortable or easy business. We must learn to step out of our squeaky clean parameters and physically go to the hurting where they are at. Although it is true that there are hurting people everywhere including churches and it is very important to help and comfort them as well, we also need to help and comfort those who are in the hospital, the homeless wandering the streets and the prisoner. Of course, we need to use common sense and not put ourselves in imminent danger, but there are a vast number of people out there in these three predicaments just wishing someone would notice. If only the friends of some of these people had not left them when in these situations, life would be more tolerable. If only more people would turn to the hurting instead of turning away when they needed someone the most… Continue reading
ARE CHRISTIANS “INTOLERANT HATERS”? THE CHARGES ARE NOT NEW
In the midst of the high-octane cultural wars of the last five years–particularly the debate over homosexual marriage–evangelical Christians have been slapped with all sorts of pejorative labels. Words such as “bigoted,” “arrogant,” “exclusive,” “dogmatic,” and “homophobic” are just a few.
But, there are probably two labels that stand out the most. First, Christians are regularly regarded as intolerant. Christians are not only regarded as intolerant religiously–because they affirm the words of Jesus that “no one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6)–but they are regarded as intolerant ethically, because they refuse to approve any and all behaviours as morally good. Continue reading