Church Blog

Church Blog

Church and State Postscript: What Now?

The election is now behind us. Perhaps you are distraught that the Democrats gained control of the House. Or maybe you are on the other side, upset that they did not gain the Senate too. Or maybe you are one of those in the middle who thinks a divided government is a good thing because it forces compromise.  In any case, we have spent multiple weeks laying out fundamental Scriptural principles that should guide us politically: the sovereignty of God;…

Church as Social Strategy

We have attempted to refine our thinking on the relationship between Christians and the government. After laying down some fundamental principles, we moved last week toward application, exploring the mission of the church: to call people out of the world and into the kingdom of God. That leads to a second, closely related observation: attempting to co-opt the government to promote a Christian vision of society is not only the wrong mission, but it is also the wrong method. Political Activism…

The Mission of the Church

Over the last few weeks, we have studied three principles that run throughout all Scripture to help orient us in the political realm: the sovereignty of God, the Lordship of Christ, and God’s people as a holy nation. Now we want to turn our attention to application, not encompassing specific scenarios, but in terms of the overall attitude of the church and Christians toward the state. A number of points could be made, but we will limit ourselves to two:…

The State of the Church

For several weeks, we have considered Biblical principles that help guide us politically. We examined the sovereignty of God and the Lordship of Christ. Now let’s turn our attention to the political status that accompanies being God’s people. The church is God’s holy nation (1 Pet 2:9-10),the place where the Lordship of Christ is recognized. Christians live in this world as strangers and aliens (1 Pet 2:11)– those who define their reality as rooted in God’s empire rather than any earthly…

The Lordship of Christ

We are in the midst of a series of articles considering Biblical principles that should orient us politically. Last week, we saw the Jewish conviction that God was king. But the great, prophetic hope of 1st-century Israel was that God would come and inaugurate a new age, liberate his people, and establish his kingdom. For Christians, that event transpired in Christ. We cannot comprehensively discuss the kingdom of God here, but we can observe a few points. First, note the…

The Sovereignty of God

The sovereignty of God is the bedrock of Scripture and Christian faith. Specifically, his power as the source of all political authority is attested in both the OT and NT. This does not divinize any particular government or make their acts ipso facto the will of God—in fact, their acts are often explicitly contrary to his will in Scripture; rather, governmental authorities are created through the existence of human society, but God orders them so his purpose is finally accomplished. Ultimately,…

Christians and Civil Government

For years, I have been keenly interested in the relationship between Christians and the civil government. I am clearly not alone in that. Any ordinary election season intensifies that existing concern. And regardless of your political leanings, I think we can agree that, between the last Presidential election and this midterm election, we are not in an ordinary season. Many Christians feel that they face a dilemma: we must vote for one major party or the other, and both options…

The Church of Football

We are just into the beginning of another football season. NFL teams play their third game today, and most high schools and colleges are 3 or 4 games into their seasons, so the shape of most teams is starting to come into focus. Depending on your level of fandom, and what team(s) you follow, you are either eagerly anticipating the next few months or bracing yourself for a long season. You won’t find many bigger football fans than me. I…

I Know Whom I Have Believed

We had memorial services this past week for two of our sisters in Christ.  Having only been here for a few months, I did not have the pleasure of knowing either of these two dear ladies. But I know that many of you counted them as close friends and mourn their loss. I have enjoyed the opportunity to know more about them through the reminiscences some of you have shared with me. And, most of all, I appreciate the fact…

Undenominational Christianity

I think it is profitable for us to be familiar with what our forefathers in the faith taught. This helps to refine our own thinking on particular issues and to understand how we got here. To be ignorant of our own history is to be unaware of how it continues to shape us. So, from time to time, I like to publish articles written in days gone by for our edification. This comes from F. D. Srygley, the front page…

Help Wanted

I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down.  Then I saw and considered it; I looked and received instruction. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man. (Proverbs 24:30-34) Tomorrow is Labor Day. Scripture has a great…

What Are You Doing Here, Elijah?

It must have been a sobering experience for Elijah, hidden away in a cave, to have God ask, What are you doing here Elijah? How Elijah found himself in that cave and where he went from there make an interesting story, a story from which we can learn a great deal. It is recorded in 1 Kings 19:9-18. Elijah bursts upon the scene in 1 Kings 17during the reign of the wicked Ahab, King of Israel, with the prayer that…