Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Church

June 7, 2014

The Good News is good news for everyone

Sharing faith, in Christian terms, is known as “evangelism.” This is the English rendering of a Greek word meaning “to proclaim the good news.” That’s a problem, because the news isn’t always good.

There was a subtext to the evangelization method I was taught that went something like this: “God is really ticked off with you. He’s mad as hell – literally. And if you don’t pray this prayer, believe the way I believe, and don’t hurry to the baptismal waters as quickly as possible, then he will likely strike you dead before I’m finished talking to you.” I would then scurry away before God’s vengeance fell like fire on the sinner and I was caught in the collateral damage.

Again, there wasn’t much good news in such confrontations, because there was no sharing of God’s love. Love? Forget it. God didn’t love, God hated. God didn’t invite, God demanded. God didn’t plead, God prosecuted. God wasn’t pursuing wayward children as a heartbroken parent; God was dogging hardened criminals like a trigger-happy bounty hunter, a ready execution order in his hip pocket.

I no longer share with others my faith in an angry, perpetually irritated God who only wishes to stamp out humanity because I no longer believe in such a Deity. In light of Jesus, and the love of God he came to reveal to the world, evangelism can radically change. We are now “compelled by love,” to employ a phrase from Paul.

We share our faith not to coerce, force, intimidate, or to instill terror. We share our faith because of and for love’s sake – the only worthy compulsion. We have learned that God loves us, remarkably so, and loves our neighbors with equal measure. This love changes us; cures our dysfunction; and gives us new life. It really is “good news.”

Text Only
Church
  • Church Briefs Sandcreek Baptist ChurchBe sure to mark the date for next Sunday’s business meeting and plan to attend. Prior to the meeting, the youth will be conducting the worship service. Come and support these young people as they grow in confidence and strengt

    July 26, 2014

  • A positive minute: Reunions are something to look forward to Donna and I recently made our way to Shelbyville, Illinois where we met up with her siblings and their families at Lake Shelbyville. The campgrounds were well-kept, clean and very peaceful. The rooms and the lodge were very nice.We had a great time w

    July 19, 2014

  • We could learn a lesson from rodeo: Either let go...or be dragged A friend who has some experience with rodeo horses sent me a most picturesque proverb: “Let go or be dragged.” Whether this phrase was first spoken by a Zen master who had achieved enlightenment on the mountainside, or by a battered cowboy nursing hi

    July 19, 2014

  • Church Briefs Liberty Baptist ChurchSunday, July 20Liberty Baptist Church will have Sunday School in the Fellowship Hall at 10 a.m. with the Lesson being, “Overcome Temptation” from 1 Corinthians 10: 6-22; Devotional Reading: Hebrews 3: 7-14, and Background Script

    July 19, 2014

  • Church Briefs Sandcreek Baptist ChurchWhat a wonderful Fourth of July weekend! The weather was perfect and the parade was even bigger and better than last year. Enjoyed seeing all of the children with their bikes, some riding in wagons, etc. Hope you were there to

    July 12, 2014

  • Poverty has its advantages I must confess to a severe case of poverty. I never took a vow of poverty; it just seems to have worked out that way for me. I am so poor the church mice have packed their bags and moved on. If I knew where they moved to, I might join them.Being poor

    July 12, 2014

  • A positive minute: Facing the wind Do you remember those great stories out of the Old Testament of the Holy Bible?Stories like when Abraham trusted that God would take care of his need when he was about to sacrifice his son and at the last second God provided a lamb thus saving his so

    July 5, 2014

  • Church Briefs Sandcreek Baptist ChurchWell, I was right. There’s nothing like the food at a church pitch-in along with cook-out hamburgers and hot dogs.As usual, I ate too much but just had to have some of that blackberry dessert. We had a good day and as usual th

    July 5, 2014

  • chu-gb070514 McBrayer pic Keeping the faith: A garden in the wilderness More than a decade ago, former Chief Justice Roy Moore of the Alabama Supreme Court installed a massive granite monument inscribed with the Ten Commandments in the rotunda of the Alabama State Judicial Building. Two years later it was removed by cour

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • A positive minute: Never alone Psalm 46:1 – “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”Do you remember the movie Home Alone? Somehow this child was left at home when the family left for a vacation. What happens is rather humorous as two bumbling thieves attem

    June 28, 2014