Tuesday, November 07, 2006

At the Margins

my friend scott emailed me an interesting article. It's an African bishop's critique of the American Church and it's concept of power and change.

Here's a section of text about the Great Commission:
We need to begin to read the Bible differently. Americans have been preoccupied with the end of the Gospel of Matthew, the Great Commission: "Go and make." I call them go-and-make missionaries. These are the go-and-fix-it people. The go-and-make people are those who act like it's all in our power, and all we have to do is "finish the task." They love that passage! But when read from the center of power, that passage simply reinforces the illusion that it's about us, that we are in charge.

I would like to suggest a new favorite passage, the Great Invitation. It's what we find if we read from the beginning of the Gospels rather than the end. Jesus says, "Come, follow me. I will make you fishers of men." Not "Go and make," but "I will make you." It's all about Jesus. And do you know the last words of Jesus to Peter, in John 21? "Follow me." The last words of Simon Peter's encounter are the same as the first words.

I hope you enjoy and are challenged.

3 comments:

daveapplegate said...

i really connect with what he said (although i did only skim the article). it's strange because a couple days ago, i was talking with my friend gary and he asked me what i thought about saving people (converting people). i told him i didn't think i had much to do with saving people's souls. the only person alive who can save a person's soul is Jesus Christ. i feel like i have little to do with helping people get saved. all i do is invite them to follow the Leader.

Anonymous said...

enjoyed the article. thoroughly. i can't help but begin thinking how i'll visit asia, africa, inda...and just 'be' with people. but im getting the feeling that i have to now. anyone want to go on a trip?

Josh said...

i'll go.

dave...i think you're going somewhere.