“Influential Pastor Warns of Socialism, Departure from God.” So reads the headline of a video I recently viewed by a well known American preacher. With the greatest respect, I beg to differ. America faces the danger of Socialism precisely because the church has offered no alternative. Let’s own up to some responsibility here. It’s unfair to shove this mess off on unbelievers when we’re the ones who have failed so miserably at offering something better. Yes, I know. We preach heaven. And that’s a very good thing when the time comes. But we’re not there yet, and Jesus commissioned us to preach a message about the Kingdom of God, a message that touches every part of our metastasized nation.
Socialism has nothing to say about heaven, but much to say about life itself. It offers inferior and ultimately unworkable answers to the problems of poverty, greed, health care, unemployment, labor, equality, and a host of other societal ills. But the point is, it offers answers. While the liberal media, Marxist professors and postmodern intellectuals of America at least have a plan in mind, the church wrings its hands and waits anxiously for Jesus to return and rescue us from this grand mess we’ve made of things.
Our last presidential election turned on the promise of “Hope and Change”, a distinctly Christian idea that finds its roots in the Scriptures. Hope means we’re living in a story that has a good ending. It means we’re going somewhere; that “the light shines on in the darkness, but the darkness has not mastered it. ” (John 1:5) The kingdom means that we have a story, that we have answers for the problems that choke our nation because the King is all wise, and He reigns over a good, and beautiful and true kingdom. It’s time we recovered that message and repented of our escape-centered gospel.
On a personal note, I had a splendid time with the DTS students at Holmsted Manor, (England), last week and then traveled by air, rail, and bus to Sarajevo, stopping for a day to visit some dear friends in Switzerland. Bosnia is much as I left it, with many people still struggling to find hope and encouragement. I’m spending leisurely hours with friends, listening to their stories of both victory and failure. The relationships here are as rich and challenging as ever, and it feels like a grand gift to have this time to reconnect. Next week I’ll return to Lausanne to teach at the base there. Your prayers are always appreciated.
3 thoughts on “WE are the problem…”
If we are only looking for an “escape” from our constantly crumbling world, then we are failing to share the kingdom and to help prepare those around us to see the reality of Whom we serve and to walk with Him daily as His ambassadors. God calls us to the front lines as winning warriors, not to the sidelines as retreating renegades. God’s Word says nothing about conceding to political correctness; it commands us to keep our eyes on Him as the author and finisher of our faith. That means staying visible, standing for and speaking the Truth (no matter how unpopular it may become), and leading others into the Kingdom until Christ returns. We are the occupation army God has placed here until our Commander returns. Let’s act like it.
Don, Glad to hear what you are up to. Know God is blessing you and others thru you. Aaron and Joel are w//their Dad and stepmom and getting their lives into more prductive mode. Joel’s past lifestyle has left him w/poor health. There are a lot of services available to help him and his brother is his main helper to access them. My own health has been a bit of a problem, of late, but that goes w/the territory of my age plus some of the stresses I was under during Paul’s last years. This place has plenty of helps and my heart is daily full of gratitude for them all.Perhaps one of the things that seems to get in the way of God’s people doing what they should is the time they seem to have to spend keeping the machinery of each denomination running. Lots of meetings- many w/inspiring preachers and teachers, but good grief, enough already! But manyh christian communities are doing their part in small ways, so I shouldn’t be so critical.Do you ahve a new album out yet w/those last wto prayers you wrote set to music ? Just as I ‘bug’ Pratt all the time to record something more- I am also ‘bugging’ you . That’s the african-american pianist whose piano music is for me fresh w/the voice of God.He played at the White House last year and I have the videos on my favorites file- but I confess I am insatiable (sp ?) for really good piano music. It does me good in many ways.Love and smiles and prayers, Janet
a friend of mine is doing the EMPAS in Lausanne at the moment – Ketsia di Betta. she emailed me last week, recommending that we invite you to speak on our next arts & music DTS. we are in Dunham, Quebec – http://www.ywamdunham.com
we’d love to have you come to share on the topic of the Kingdom of God with an emphasis on the worldview of the arts.
do you have an email address at which we could correspond?