Friday, November 23, 2007

Wascalie Wabbit!

Here I go again, making mad links between stories and memories…

I’ve been keeping up with this one story on the news about this small Russian orthodox church. Apparently their self proclaimed “prophet” has led them to believe the world is going to end in May of 2008. Because of this proclamation they have barricaded themselves in this little hole with enough food and water to last. Not surprisingly the Russian authorities have found this “prophet” insane and are working with him now to coax his followers out of the hole because it is unhealthy and unsanitary, and they also have children down there. Then I came across an article on Relevant’s website talking about the outside Jesus. Basically the author suggest that much of Jesus ministry was not focused inside the church or His followers, but the majority of the teachings were located and focused outside of the religious society of that day. Jesus taught that to follow Him is to live in the world but to not be of the world because we are born from above now, we have been reborn in the Spirit by having faith in Christ.

So we don’t live in anticipation of escape from this world, we should live in anticipation of Jesus coming back and restoring this world. It’s interesting to just look at the Bible holistically. It starts in a garden and ends in a garden. Everything in between is God redeeming what He created. We are part of this story, part of this journey, part of the redemption process. God actually includes us in His work. Following Jesus has little to do with making your buildings bigger, just getting by until He comes back, or barricading yourself in a little hole. Jesus wants us to infect the world with His love. His will is to see all men come to Him. He is giving us more time to do so, in fact. So the world shouldn’t be looking in holes for followers of Christ, they should be surrounded by them in the real world; places like work, coffee shops, basketball courts, hair salons, street corners, under overpasses, and anywhere a human being can be found who needs Jesus. We need to be out spreading the news, not hording it to ourselves. God didn’t create a cartoon called Looney Tunes for us to mimic, we should be no rabbit in the hole named Bugs, always running from a pesky hunter, Elmer. So break out of whatever hole you find yourself in, whether it is your comfort zone, Christian world (not saying this is bad, but if you drink Christian coffee, wear Christian clothes, listen to Christian music, only have Christian friends, and only do things labeled Christian, then how in the world are you supposed to reach non-Christians?), fears, pain, or past, escape from the hole and tell the world, Jesus is King and He offers us redemption, reconciliation with a Holy God. We must respond with faith and repentance, but the gift of grace is free through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice. That message is only a cute thought in a hole though, it becomes powerful when it surfaces and starts touching lives and changing communities.

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