In November there was a lot of backlash on twitter following the general election in the United States. People were debating about how different Christians respond to social issues. Many individuals felt that certain Christians use their salvation to play down the current issues in society. The “It doesn’t matter what happens here on earth because heaven awaits me” type approach.
As Christians we do have the confident hope of an eternal life in heaven that has beenpromised to us through Christ. However, this does not mean that in the meantime we should detach ourselves from society.
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who
believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.’’
1 John 2:24-25:
“So you must remain faithful to what you have been taught from the beginning. If you do, you will remain in fellowship with the Son and with the Father. And in this fellowship we enjoy the eternal life he promised us.”
If we look at the life of Jesus Christ he knew he would come to earth and die for the sake of humanity.
“From then on Jesus began to tell his disciples plainly that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, and that he would suffer many terrible things at the hands of the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.”
Jesus knew that following his death he would be raised back to life again. When he was getting rejected left right and centre he could have just put his feet up and been like you know what I’m going to die and be seated at the right hand of my father so I’m just going to leave these people to it. Imagine that! But the whole point of him coming to earth was to impart his essence unto his believers. Jesus taught his people and fellowshipped with them.
He also got stuck in with the people and did as much as he could to bring light into dark situations and help change people’s lives for the better.
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
“For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.”
Just imagine where would we be without the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ?
As Christians we are supposed to be led by the examples of Christ. We also need to impart the essence of salvation that has been birthed within us unto those around us. The Lord tells us that we are the salt of the earth.
“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavour? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.’’
As the salt of the earth we need to get stuck into our communities. Our salvation is not just for ourselves but it’s for others too. If it was just for us we would be the salt of our own lives but we are the salt of the earth. Therefore as well as building ourselves up spiritually by praying, and studying the word we need to allow the fruit that this bears in us to extend its branches out to those around us.
We all have different roles to play but at the end of the day we make up one body.
1 Corinthians 12:4-6:
“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.”
“Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.”
“However, he has given each one of us a special gift through the generosity of Christ. That is why the Scriptures say, “When he ascended to the heights, he led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to his people.”
We are all at different stages in life and doing different things but whether you are young or old, in school, at work or at home, we all have distinct roles. We often get put off or held back by our own thoughts, not thinking we are good enough, too young or too old, not enough resources…
Rather than focusing on what we can’t do, we should celebrate what we can do. It is also important to remember that it is God that qualifies us to do what he has called us to do.
2 Corinthians 3:5:
“It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God.”
God knows you more than anyone and he’s not going to ask you to do something he knows you can’t do. The question is are you willing to do what he’s called you to do…
It’s also important to remember that aside from setting up organisations, giving talks, volunteering e.c.t, the way we treat members in our community also holds weight. We can be doing all the activities under the sun to help people within our communities but we have to be consistent with it. We should always be conscious of how we treat people and endeavour to show them love, mercy and compassion.
This is what the LORD Almighty said: “Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.”
You don’t always have to come up with a grand masterplan to save the world in order to contribute, small gestures can go a long way too. Smile at someone, give that old lady or pregnant woman the seat on the train, if you’re making tea at work you could make a cup for your colleague, keep the door open for the person behind you. Little things like this can really make a difference in reminding people that there are still some people who actually care about others.
As the year is coming to an end, alongside evaluating how we can better ourselves let us also reflect on how we can better our communities and those around us as we enter the New Year.
Written by Bernie.