Monday, 27 November 2006

Men turned into jellyfishes

TeamPyro's Spurgeon post this Monday is worth reading, as Spurgeon contemplated the lack of seriously convinced sceptics (and convinced Christians) in 1874. As so often with Spurgeon, he could have been talking about today.

Our society doesn't often argue persuasively for unbelief; it assumes it.
Our response too easily is to leave off arguing persuasively for belief, and assume it.

Yet what happens then is that in private we assume the gospel to be true, and in public engagement - whether when chatting with friends about a TV programme or in not chatting with non-Christians at any time at all - we assume the gospel not to be true. That is, we don't announce it to be false, but we buy into the lie that with our non-Christian friends we have to speak as if we assume it to be false. We have to speak from their perspective. With Christian friends and acquaintances, we mention God, we interpret things from the perspective of the gospel. With non-Christian friends we refrain from mentioning God seriously and certainly from talking about the gospel's relevance to the latest film plot under discussion, effectively thinking & acting as if it isn't true.

That the man Jesus lived perfectly 2000 years ago, revealed God to us, died under God's wrath for us, who love to rebel against him, having been given by his Father God to do so, and rose again to give new life to all who believe in him, redeeming us from the tyranny of sin, will come again to judge the living and the dead and receive his own into eternal glory to resurrected bodies with him forever - if this gospel is true then it is true for every part of the world, every person, every age, every time, every culture and every language. It is true when talking with those who do believe it and it is true when talking with those who don't. It is true so we must be doing theology - delving into it more and applying it more - when we're chatting with kids, when we're lounging on the sofa, when we're in the car, when we're lying down & when we get up. Theology is not a private matter. When you're conversing about a film, converse as a believer in this gospel; when discussing your children's education, discuss it as a believer that Jesus Christ is Lord; when bantering about behaviour in a football match and a ref's call, banter as a believer in the judge of the living and the dead.

Our society assumes unbelief. Don't let those with whom we speak think that we assume it too.

3 comments:

Caleb W said...

The student newspaper I write for printed a letter in this week's edition complaining that my articles assume the existence of God, and insisted this was nonsense because there is no God. I was both pleased to be doing something right - writing from Christian assumptions - and to come across a student of firm convictions (now there's a thing!)

If just I took God's existence for granted, I wouldn't have put in a debate on that subject in this week's "Debate" page, which I edit. Hopefully my critic might find that page of interest!

étrangère said...

Good on you! I pray that you're articles will encourage other Christians to live and speak from Christian assumptions too.

Hm maybe I'll start issuing badges: "Certified non-jellyfish."

Anonymous said...

Obviously not a jellyfish :-)

I saw your comments on flame throwing blog and liked them.

Your comments on world view remind me of my student days and Francis Schaeffer but that is all ancient history now.

your right, don't be a evan-Jellyfish