Ten thousand thoughts…Someone said that they are more concerned with evangelism than working out problems within the church.  I agree that we cannot let our squables over MCUSA or whatever to take a dominant place in our church, because the most important thing is bringing glory to God. We are called to love the Lord our God with everything we are and to love our neighbors as ourselves.  If we love our neighbor and if we love God then evangelism is hugely important (as in, sharing the love of God with others, and sharing the truth of the good news of Christ).  This will bring glory to God, right?  But about those who are already saved…I’m not even going to touch security of salvation…but I definitely see that we are called to care for our brothers and sisters in Christ and hold them to accountability.  For example, so much of the New Testament is instruction on how to deal with the church and problems within it.  And speaking of evangelism and witnessing, what kind of witness is it to unbelievers if we say “yeah, we care about you now, but once you get ‘saved’ you’re on your own.”  Are we examplifying Christ by not caring about His children?  What about love? Who will be touched by a message that says “we just want you to sign this contract…say that you believe in Jesus and you’ll be in and that’s that and you get to heaven and I’ll never contact you again”.  That’s not what he meant, but my point is first of all, we must love our brothers and sisters in Christ, and secondly we must examplify that love within the church as a witness to those outside of it, and thirdly, we must love those ‘outside’ the church and not stop loving them once they join.  And on a more personal level, I would like to know that if I was going down the wrong path that my brothers and sisters in Christ would care enough about me to confront me on it.  So my conclusion….we do not wash our hands of church problems…or churches for that matter.  We must deal with what needs to be dealt with to the best of our ability, and we must do it out of love not only for the non-believer, but for the believer as well. And mostly, out of love for God.  How can we go wrong that way?  Well…I’m sure we’ll manage, but its the best road to be headed down, in my oppinion.

And Merry Christmas!  Thank you, Jesus, for coming to us.

Matthew 22:37-40 

37Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”


3 responses to “

  • pianomon4

    Here’s a question: should we relate differently to people inside and outside the church? and if so, how? I don’t know if the question whether or not the church should be more focused on itself or on missions is really the point, because he calls some of us to be ‘evangelizers’ and others to be ‘restorers’ or ‘encouragers’ of the church. I guess we all have a role in both. “squables” in the church really confuse me, because on the surface I see Unity as key to the church, and that we should be focused on God rather than our own preferences. But what about different interpretations of what “focusing on God” really means on a practical level? How “broad” do we want our acceptance of differing beliefs to be? I don’t know what point I’m trying to make here, this is basically a stream-of-consciousness writing… hope your Christmas was a great one!

  • jgarber

    I’m making the tea! 

  • jgarber

    btw I love your profile pic: takes me back

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