I’m writing this from Hawaii, where I just spent a wonderful afternoon with students at the University of Hawaii. What a special time.
They had viewed the “Is Genesis History?” film and that was our primary topic. The questions were good, well thought out, and it was a privilege to interact with them. We got a chance to talk about some of the back stories of the film, some of which are quite funny, but most importantly we discussed the criticality of reading the Scripture in the genre in which it is written. We also discussed God’s nature of compassion and not only His care for the weak and needy, but His command for us to care for them as well. This is a contrary picture of the god of evolution who for millions of years must have delighted in the suffering of creatures and a not-so-divine plan that the strong destroy and devour the weak, using the death and suffering of creatures with partially formed body parts to eventually achieve his purposes. This doesn’t match the God we know, who stands up for the weak and needy... the God who would command us to care for the child with deformities, for the elderly with infirmities, for those who suffer from mental disorders, for those who are the weak and disposed of the world.
But the most important thing, for me, that comes from these special events, is that I get to see, once again, just how “one” the Body of Christ is. It doesn’t matter what nation you come from; it doesn’t matter what your native tongue is; it doesn’t matter what shape your eyes are or the tone of your skin or whether you come from a rich home or a poor home, whether you are young or old, a plumber or a cowboy or a banker. There is a oneness in the family of God that defies the understanding of the world.
I have had the privilege of meeting family in Egypt and South Africa, in Lutheran churches and Pentecostal churches, in rural Tennessee and New York City, in homes and huge cathedrals, with those from different tribes and languages and nations.
Jesus said that the world would know that He was the Son of God because of our “oneness”.
“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” John 17:20-21
It is unfortunate that, though we are “one” in Christ, we often live in disunity within the Body. What would happen if God’s people began to show a unity, not some ecumenical blandness of meshed theology and church doctrine, but a practical outworking of brothers and sisters in Christ, where different churches met in the town park once a month to break bread with each other? Or they came together for community stewardship or well-being? Or believers of various denominations met together in small groups to study God’s word and pray with each other?
Somewhere in here is the demonstration of the vision that Jesus repeated over and over again in His prayer to the Father… that we might be one as He and the Father were One.
What a grand and divine vision and one I pray we pursue.
I deeply enjoy when I get the privilege to taste it. I did so at the University of Hawaii with my dear brothers and sisters in Christ.
What a joy it was! Thank you!