Tuesday, May 24, 2005

On Christian Standards

Rev. Creighton Lovelace of Danieltown Baptist Church in North Carolina offers a succinct description of how Fundamentalists measure the effectiveness of their witness. After being criticized for posting a message on a church sign that said, "The Koran Needs to be Flushed," Dateline Alabama quotes Lovelace as saying:

"If we stand for what is right and for God's word and for Christianity then the world is going to condemn us and so right away when I got a complaint I said, 'Well somebody's mad, somebody's offended, so we must be doing something right.'"
For all the lip service they give to God's Word, Fundamentalists refuse to acknowledge the standard by which Jesus said our witness would be measured:

"But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on his right, and the goats on the left.

Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed by My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.'

Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite you in, or naked and clothe You? And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?

And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'

Then He will also say to those on His left, 'Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.'

Then they themselves also will answer, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, on in prison, and did not take care of You?'

Then He will answer them, saying, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

(Matthew 25:31-46 New American Standard Bible)


Alice Clay said...

This unfortunate mindset is all too common. We'll be all outspoken, in-your-face about our "faith" and if it offends you, then it must be because the Holy Spirit is convicting you of your sin...therefore, we should just be more outspoken and outrageous.

so much for all that bible talk about peace, kindness, gentleness, and love...not to mention humility.

You know, even though I'm familiar with that sort of in-your-face attitude, it still shocks and saddens me when I encounter it. How can we possibly be thinking that we are standing for truth by offending our brothers and sisters who believe differently than we do??

Yeah, scripture says the world will hate us, but that doesn't mean we have to help it along...

Dr. Mike Kear said...

Thanks for the post, Dr. Prescott.

Whenever I see signs like this, or hear of idiots like Rev. Phelps' group picketing somewhere, It makes me want to pray, "Lord, please deliver us from those who claim to follow you." Thanks for the "Bible truth" on the subject!

Alice, you said, "it still shocks and saddens me when I encounter it." It shocks and saddens me, too. And I think that is a good thing. May we never become acclimated to fundamentalist invidiousness.



Sherri Nichols said...

Just imagine what would have happened had that sign been parked in front of a mosque, rather than a Baptist church, and said "Bible" instead of "Koran"...not only are people of this mindset seemingly incapable of understanding "inasmuch as you do it to the least of these my brethren", they don't even seem capable of grasping the golden rule.

Greek Shadow said...

The golden rule is about toleration, the intolerant never grasp it, then when there is this big hush after they've said or done something they look bewildered and say "What?"
Joseph McCarthy when he was finally shown for the fraud he was perfect example.

grandma1 said...

Is there any hope that enough of these self proclaimed preachers show their studity. Americans will swing away from the Religious Right.

Andrew & Bonnie said...

I agree that it was not a good decision to put up the sign, as that is going to do nothing but push people away that hold to the Koran. As a Christian, he should have been kind, meek, gentle, etc. and that is how you show people the truth. At the same time, Jesus was talking about how you treat PEOPLE, and his sign was about a THING.