Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Sermon On The Mount...Can America Christians Live It?

Brent Steeno recently posted this on his blog: "While visiting a popular christian web site a question struck my heart that I want to put out in front of everyone who reads this blog. Is Christianity in the west spending too much time focused on external issues and not the internal issues of the heart? Maybe we should hear less about moral and global issues that mega churches are taking on and more about the Sermon on the Mount and pursuing a life of wholeheartedness."

He got me thinking...and that's good. I agree we need to focus on living the Sermon on the Mount lifestyle. It should be first and foremost on our minds. Yet it is not either one or the is both/and. The internal issues of the heart are critical, but the internal realities always cause an external manifestation. The church is not too concerned for the poor, weak, oppressed, aids victims, etc. The Western Church is too focused upon itself. Case in point. DALLAS –Partnering with RSI Church Stewardship Group, Calvary Chapel in Ft. Lauderdale has received pledges totaling $105 million, believed to be the largest amount ever raised by a U.S. church.

What if this church had raised 105 million dollars to do ministry in the "Projects". What if the body of Christ gave more to relieve the suffering than the U.S. Government? When the world sees the Church what they see is someone who wants to be just like them. I believe Jesus would say to the American church, just like He did the rich young ruler, sell all you have and come follow me. America to whom much is given much is required. The majority of Hospitals in America were started by churches. Yet the 21st Century Church seems more interested in living for itself. If every church in America sold its real estate holdings what could be done for the Gospel? Just do the math on the top 20 Mega churches.

It is doubtful, that anyone liquidated all of their assets to raise 105 million. What if we the church really started being the church. What if we stopped drinking $3.+ coffees and gave that money to fund the work of the ministry. What if church boards got serious about reducing overhead and voluntarily chose to downsize for the sake of the Gospel. It is about the poor, sick, suffering, and to them in Jesus' name is doing it unto Him.

Wolfgang Simpson says that when you give some one money, it was never yours to begin with you were the courier for the Lord. When a couriers uses something he/she is supposed to deliver to someone else we call that theft. Are we diverting God's resources for ourselves? Are we stealing money that should be funding the work of the ministry to build empires, monuments, and memorials to ourselves.

Jesus is concerned with temples not buildings...there are 6.5 billion of them on the planet most of whom He is desiring for a holy habitation. A dwelling place within our hearts. Let us do something eternal. Let us live in this present age as though Eternity really matters.

When the Sermon on the Mount is the internal reality of our hearts; it will manifest externally. We will be less concerned about our comforts and respond to the needs of fellow humans, everywhere.



Post a Comment

<< Home