“I’m shocked with the way the world is acting!” Have you said, or thought that lately?
Why is the church shocked, when the world acts like the world? And then, use social media and various other outlets to condemn their actions?
I could be wrong, but I do not believe Jesus ever did this, nor does the Bible direct us, to do so.
When Jesus became angry and forceful, it was against the religious hypocrites of that day, the defilement of the House of God, it was against demons, darkness and the devil.
But when He came across worldly people, living a worldly lifestyle contrary to God, it was always met with a response of love and compassion. Followed by acts of kindness, acts of wisdom and acts of power that demonstrated the more excellent way. He pointed the way up, as the answer for their way out, and the way to be set free. Jesus always knew when to be the Lion, and when to be the Lamb.
“You cannot embrace the world with the love of God, with a stone in your hand”
The Bible tells us that God is love, and that love never fails. Jesus said; “if you have seen Me you have seen the Father.” Then He went on to “command” His followers; you and I, to act like Him and to do the things that He did, and even greater.
The foremost way display Christ and His Kingdom on earth, is to love, to love your neighbor, to love your enemy and to love all of mankind, for the Strategy of The Kingdom is love.
“Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world” — 1 John 4:17
It is not the mission of the church to crusade against a specific human behavior, but to demonstrate the Christ in us, that transforms human behavior. We are called, equipped and empowered to be a light that shines, not a light that blinds. A light that draws people out of darkness, rather than pushing them further in, with the clanging sounds of religious condemnation. Pointing out sin to a sinner who doesn’t think they are sinning, doesn’t seem to make much sense to me. “Love is the power plant that illuminates God’s City on a hill”
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” — Matthew 5:14 & 16
The way the darkness in someone’s life is exposed, is when “The Light” is introduced. The message of the Church of Jesus Christ to the lost, is not a political one, a racial one, or one of behavioral modification. We also have much more to offer then the message of not going to hell when you die; (while that is exceedingly valuable) It is the message that He preached and demonstrated when He walked the earth. It was His first message, His ongoing message as He went from city to city and His last message before He ascended into heaven; “Good News! The Kingdom of God is here on earth as it is in Heaven . . . right now!”
“God put the Kingdom of Heaven in every believer, so every believer would be Heaven on Earth.”
We are not only orators of this treasured message, we are literal carriers of its reality. A superior reality then the one seen by the natural eye. Jesus reminds us of this in Luke 17:21 when He says; “The Kingdom of God is within you.” I believe God put the Kingdom of Heaven in every believer, so every believer would be Heaven on Earth! God’s will, is accomplished through the willing, and He has given every one of us an invitation to live a lifestyle of intimate, powerful and miraculous encounters with Him. Then in turn to be a vessel of light that delivers the reality of His goodness to a world that is groaning for the manifestation of His children. So, my beloved brothers and sisters in Christ, let’s get out there today, and give’m HEAVEN!
Don Sturiano, is the Lead Pastor of Kingdom Life Christian Church, which meets at 11 a.m. Sunday at 3700 26th St. W. in Bradenton. For more information: 941-776-0026, www.kingdomlifechristianchurch.org. Faith Matters is a regular feature of Saturday’s Herald, written by local clergy members.