These things and more?

The Bible churns.

Most church folks think of the Bible as a book with one consistent witness, and in many respects it is. The Bible contains the eternal truth of the love of God for us, the divine call to love our neighbor, and countless other constants.

It is also true that within the history of The Church, certain verses have risen to the surface in particular times. Specific passages called The Church back to an idea needed in a given age. In the days of Martin Luther, Romans 1:17 rose to the surface – For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last. Luther called the church back to a faith based on belief over actions, and The Church changed in response to his call.

On the social justice side, one rarely quoted but a favorite is Walter Rauschenbusch. Rauschenbusch insisted salvation hold a corporate dimension. Jesus died, in his thought, not just for an individual to be saved but for a people. He spent his life advocating that Christianity be measured by assisting the poor and protecting the vulnerable from exploitation. In the Bible, he found a kindred spirit in the Book of James and he raised these verses;

Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. – James 2:15-17

What I find interesting is that both Luther and Rauschenbusch emphasized different aspects of Christianity – one stressing faith and the other works. Each spoke an important word of God and the Spirit moved as they advocated what God was asking of The Church in their time.

Which leads me to this question – what verses would you say are rising today? Where in the Bible do you see the Spirit focusing our attention because of what God is doing now? I am interested to know what you think! I will throw out a few.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God – Matthew 5:9

Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father – John 14:12

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
 – Matthew 19:14

When I see the amount of conflict in our world, how Jesus is pushing His church to rediscover the wonder of God, and what children face today, these verses pop into mind.

The second of them, I will make the focus of the next blog and as always share a thought!

3 thoughts on “These things and more?

  1. Ephesians 4:29 “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.”

  2. Matthew 25:40
    “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

    Matthew 5: 3 – 9
    “Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    4 Blessed are those who mourn,
    for they will be comforted.
    5 Blessed are the meek,
    for they will inherit the earth.
    6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
    for they will be filled.
    7 Blessed are the merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.
    8 Blessed are the pure in heart,
    for they will see God.
    9 Blessed are the peacemakers,
    for they will be called children of God.
    10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

  3. Matthew 25:35-46 (NIV)
    35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

    37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

    40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

    And let’s not neglect to read the rest of the story.
    45 “Then He will answer them, ‘I assure you: Whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me either.’

    46 “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

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