Monday, November 15, 2010

Remember with Thanks

Please read Isaiah 12 and click on the title to listen.
This Sunday was not only Stewardship Commitment Sunday, but also the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Earlier in the service, we watched a video and learned that in 52 countries, the gospel is illegal. Please go to www.persecution.org to see videos or learn more.
My thoughts about the fact that 52 countries feel the need to outlaw the gospel demonstrate that the gospel is powerful--powerful to not only to transform individual lives, but to transform governments and social systems.
I also think that as long as anticonversion laws exist, some human rights will never be recognized.
I also thought about our God. Though it is commanded in Scripture, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." God isn't threatened when we "go awhoring" (as Scripture puts it) after other gods. And if we are honest, we will admit to idolatry in ourselves. Looking at Scripture, what does God do to those that chase after other gods? God punishes and blesses in turn. God sends prophets and teachers. God refuses to answer prayers and performs miracles. God does whatever God can to restore people back to Himself. And God always accepts and receives with welcome and rejoicing those who turn and return to God. The Godhead is totally secure in personhood and identity. God is jealous, angry, and grieving when people turn away from God, but God doesn't need followers enforcing anticonversion lawsin order to maintain Lordship. He is Lord or Lords and King of Kings regardless of what people do, and that will never change.
How insecure are followers who must use anticonversion laws and prevent exposure to the gospel in order to maintain religious order? How does that reflect upon the god(s) being worshipped?

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