The Government’s Number One Antagonist

"Number One Antagonist" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward
“Number One Antagonist” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

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The Church’s primary role in relation to the State is prophetic.

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13 Replies to “The Government’s Number One Antagonist”

  1. SWe who claim to follow Jesus need to reclaim this prophetic role instead of allowing the KKKhristians to appear to be the voice of the Jesus in the world simply because they scream more loudly than anyone else.

  2. …and to be prophetic we must be prepared to be misjudged, mocked, hated, ostracised even killed and not care if we live or die.

    But as you have said David – few people will take the risk of any of these kind of things happening. Maybe the church has had it too easy and has gone soft.

  3. David – “the church as a body, no” – of course the accuracy of that assertion depends on what the definition of “church” is.

    We can all be tempted to throw out the baby with the bathwater when we have a dislike for something even when having valid reasons for the dislike. And moving forward with not perpetuating the same must require that we learn from it lest we become the very likeness of that which we rightfully judge to be unfulfilling to its mission.

  4. No – I am saying it depends on the definition of church and bringing to attention the danger of throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

    If I were to say something consistent with this it would be that the line between good and evil is drawn in all of us and every minute of every hour of every day we are faced with choices to feed either.

    In your definition of “church” it appears both in you OP and in your question to me that you may be referring to the “institutional” or “visible” church.

    With your theological education you will no doubt be aware of the origin of the word “church” in the Greek ‘ekklesia’ which comes from two words ‘ek’ meaning ‘out’ and ‘kaleo’ meaning to ‘call.’

    So if that meaning is understood then the calling out so to speak sounds a lot like prophecy does it not? Is that not what you are getting at with the “early days”?

    I agree with you, such is rare with few people taking the risk. Even a casual reading of the gospels shows how many fell away when the going go tough.

    It’s always been this way.

  5. Interesting Jack. I used to believe and teach the physical and invisible church idea. But I don’t believe in that anymore. There is the idea of marriage, and then there is a marriage… in the flesh. There is the idea of church, and then there is the church… the real physical church. I think that to separate the spiritual from the material is an attempt to excuse the real church and real members from responsibility. Just my thoughts.

  6. How I wish I could upload a png here… Anyway it says “Don’t set out to change the world. Change Yourself.”

    The Church as a body will only reclaim its prophetic voice if followers of Jesus become prophetic people. Each of us must embrace the full Gospel as Jesus teaches us. One way to do that is to google the Matthew 25 pledge, sign, and live it.

    Another way is to see what all Christians share and you can do that in my Facebook group, celebrate What Christians Have in Common.

    If one wants to live the Matthew 25 pledge, one way to do that is via my Facebook group, Gloriamarie’s Progressive Stuff. https://www.facebook.com/groups/gloriamariesprogressivepetitions/

  7. Thanks for your thoughts David.

    Please correct me if I have understood you wrongly.

    What I hear you saying about the “invisible” church is one that is not physically present, is that right? By talking of “the idea of church” and drawing a distinction between that and “the real physical church” seems to confirm that is where you are coming from.

    I agree that separating the spiritual and material (physical) is to excuse responsibility. Was this not what the apostle Paul is recorded as addressing in the first letter to the Corinthian church? To the extent in one case of giving instruction to expel someone? And in the midst of all of that the writing of the most excellent way of love?

    My understanding of the “invisible” church as Martin Luther talked of is a little different. It is of some of it being part of the visible church and there being a wider context of connection with others past present and future, alive and dead with Christ as both head and servant of all and it being about the central principle of love. Love of God and love of others as self.

    Of course there are forces that would hijack that and again we all faces choices to feed evil or good with the line between the two being drawn in all of us.

    Good to share views. I’ve enjoyed our chat :).

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