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January 14, 2021

A Pastoral Word. . .

Pastor Mark Adams

January 14, 2021
Like you, I’ve been glued to the tube these days in order to keep abreast of the latest nightmarish news concerning last week’s insurrection in---of all places---the United States of America.

As I watched it all unfold it felt like I was seeing things that happen in other countries---not in the good ole U.S. of A.! But the nightmare is true.
  • After the events of last Wednesday, the Chinese Embassy in the U.S. advised Beijing’s nationals to “exercise caution before going to public places.” I’ve received advice like that when visiting other nations, but not my own.

  • Cuba, Turkey and Venezuela---places where US leaders have rightly condemned communist uprisals, are now saying America is hypocritical.

  • In China, the nationalist tabloid Global Times accused the U.S. of double standards, for calling Wednesdays assault on the capital a riot, but praising Hong Kong demonstrators who in 2019 broke into the legislative council.

  • And a Muslim man named Ali Abdulla who lives in Baghdad says, “They (leaders in the U.S.) claim that they have democracy for their own people, but it’s only a theater. It doesn’t exist. They tried to show a false image about Arab countries, saying that we are disorganized. But look at them.”

With comments like these, I fear the U.S. has lost something very valuable, something that is almost impossible to get back--its credibility as a “preacher” of democracy.

OUCH!

The “walk” of too many Americans hasn’t matched their talk and because of that others won’t listen to our talk. From now on when our government tries to speak out against evil, the response will be similar to Jesus’ words, in Luke 7:42, “How can you complain about our behavior! You hypocrites, get YOUR act together before you talk about our shortcomings.”

DOUBLE OUCH! Could anything be worse that this?

Yes! When our behavior as Christians doesn’t match our message, people will refuse to listen to the witness we are commissioned to share and that is literally infinitely worse.

It’s one thing for a nation to lose its credibility.  That has temporary implications. But when a Christian loses his or hers, the implications are eternal.

If by our sinful attitudes and actions we lose our “cred,” our believability, our witness--there are lost people who will turn away from Jesus.

We must remember, we are here on this temporary world for one reason; to share THE CURE. In the same way that many are refusing the vaccine for Covid-19 because they are suspicious about it, there are people who will refuse to hear about THE CURE if our behavior is such that it makes them suspicious about the Gospel.

In short, if our walk doesn’t match our talk much more painful “OUCHES” are forthcoming.

“Whoever claims to live in Him must live as Jesus did.” (1 John 2:6)

Keep the SON in your eyes!
Mark 
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