My heart is heavy because of the divisions in our nation and world are significant.
This past week the Supreme Court of the United States made it crystal clear that people of faith cannot remove themselves from the public square.
Decisions that affect how real people live and how real people die require the church (you and me and us together) to speak and to act.
Decisions that affect people’s lives have moral consequences.
For this reason, we must speak and act.
As a pastor I am called to rejoice with those who rejoice and grieve with those who grieve.
The Westminster Confession of Faith reminds us, “God alone is Lord of the conscience.” For centuries, this has been a guidepost for the church.
In 1521, responding to the situations of his day Martin Luther said,
“Here I stand, I can do no other.”
I think there are six guiding principles before us:
- Conviction, and then
As we move forward, I think there are four defining characteristics. The church, to the best of our ability, has the right and responsibility to:
- Speak the voice of Christ into culture and world,
- Be the hands of Christ in our world,
- Welcome all in the name of Christ, and
- Stand with and for people who are especially vulnerable, exploited, and hurting.
This we do to the glory of God and for the reconciliation of the world. Amen.
Roger and Becky Hendren says
Thanks for these words alof wisdom and hope!
Tom Laney says
Hope you will make some copies of the entire address (at least one].
Marylin Kelly says
Pastor, clearly, you have thought deeply, prayerfully, and intelligently. The privacy and, comfort, and even agony of conscience is with an individual and the Holy Spirit. I share your priorities and find their applications both helpful and challenging. We must, as a nation and government, find moral and ethical guidelines for which issues are political or federal and which are personal and belief centered. God be our guide, I pray.