To Play God Or To Obey God?

As desperate refugees from the Muslim world reach the west in ever-increasing numbers, we Christians have a choice to make. Will we play God, deciding what kinds of people are acceptable in our homelands and scrambling to exclude those whose extreme need and differing cultural perspectives might possibly unsettle our own comfortable lives? Or will we obey God, welcoming them as we would be welcomed in their situation? Will we build walls to insulate ourselves and protect our culture from contamination? Or will we recognize the astounding opportunity that God in His Providence is presenting to us and seize the moment?

There’s no question that the mass movement of Muslims into Europe and North America will change the face of our societies. Will we hide our light in Fortress America or let it shine? Will we bury ourselves with our talent in a napkin to preserve it until the Master’s return? Or will we trust and obey, caring for the stranger and the needy in front of us and let God handle the world as He always has?

It is all well and good to give our money so that someone else can go tell the world the good news. But when the world comes to us, our response will prove whether we really cared about the gospel or merely wished to check the box of evangelism.

And To Dust You Shall Return

Here’s a sincere question for my conservative Christian friends: as we lined up to vote for George W. Bush in 2000, would any of us have believed that in a short 15 years, the favorite candidate of the “Christian right” would be a philandering casino tycoon and Clinton donor with four bankruptcies, two divorces and God only knows how many affairs under his belt; an outspoken defender of partial birth abortion, gun control and the abuse of eminent domain who became famous by objectifying women and successful by paying off corrupt politicians (and is shameless enough to boast openly about it); a man whose insincerity is as plain as the hair on his head and whose assumed “Christianity,” though of the shallowest possible type, still comes across as an implausible piece of bad acting? Be honest – would any of us have believed that story for an instant?

Church, the political “Christian right” was at its best a defective clone, conceived in the laboratory of human invention – a heartless deformity on life support. It has been dead for some time and by now it stinketh. Now that the Trump campaign has done us all the favor of a very public, very nasty autopsy on national television, can we just bury it and get back to the proclamation of the Word, with an extra helping of humility? It’s past time, brothers and sisters.