My blog has moved!

You will be automatically redirected to the new address. If that does not occur, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Minding the Poor: Part II

(Note: This is a continuation of a previous blog; you can read that post here.)

Why is that?

One of the best things about Jesus’ coming (according to Jesus) was that the Gospel (and all of its implications) would be made available to the poor. Luke 4:18-19 (ESV)

      Luk 4:18  "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed,

Luk 4:19  to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."

So, if this was why the Spirit of the Lord was upon Jesus and he would fulfill this promise through his own poverty, imprisonment, blindness, and oppression on the cross, why is it that we are so averse to embrace it?

Could it be that we don’t see ourselves as ambassadors of Christ? Could it be that we don’t see ourselves as continuing to bring the Gospel of salvation and liberation to those who are still in bondage?

Many of us would protest loudly that we are; after all, the pastor talks about it all the time, we have big community outreach events, and we are big on “getting the word out” about Jesus. We understand and we acknowledge that in order to reach people with the Gospel that he have to be missionally minded.

Perhaps we hear it so much that we have deceived ourselves into believing we actually do it.

Who are our outreach events and programs and even our evangelistic crusades pointed at? Right, people like ourselves; we are concerned that everyone like us hears and responds to the Gospel. The problem with this is that eventually all the people like us are presented with a demonstration and a declaration concerning the Gospel and they reject it.

Then what do we do? If we are like the typical suburban church, we keep hitting them again and again, hoping that are repeated blows will pummel them into the kingdom of heaven.

But it will not do so; I don’t care how long and how hard we punch.

So what are we left with? We are forced to take the Gospel to people not like us. Now, many have decided that this route is best carried out through foreign missions (and if God calls us; we should definitely go). However, many people are going into foreign missions because they do not want to be rejected for their faith (some actually believe that everyone becomes Christians on the mission field). We also want to be a part of helping the poor and the destitute, which is a noble and Christ honoring task.

If we are not called to take care of such people here.

When we see that the Gospel needs to be taken to the poor around us, then it forces us to look at our churches and how we approach bringing forth the good news. It forces us to confront our own prejudices and own up to our own fears and insecurities.

So, how “poor-friendly” are our churches?

To be Continued.



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home