Servants Not Slaves

“If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

John 8:31-32


In celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King Junior today I have come to appreciate even more this past year the fact that as a minister of the gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Dr. King viewed life through the lens of God’s Word, the unchanging Word of God. I appreciate the words of James A. Lindsay and Mike Nanya who said, “According to the biblical worldview, people “are children of God, fashioned in His divine image. [According to] Social Justice, we are children of society, fashioned by its social constructions and the power dynamics they maintain.” The biblical view is what Dr. King embraced and prayed the world would realize one day. The good news of the gospel is, when Jesus returns to earth, his dream will come true! Maranatha!

Scott Allen says it better than I can when he wrote, “The Bible is far more than a message of salvation, as absolutely vital as that is. It is a comprehensive worldview that defines and shapes all aspects of reality and human existence. It is God’s “Transforming Story,” but unlike other worldviews, it is true. It accords with reality as it actually exists. It defines for all times, and all peoples, what words such as truth, love, justice, and equality actually mean. These true, biblical definitions give rise to distinctively Christian cultures. In the words of theologian Robert Lewis Wilken, “culture lives by language, and the sentiments, thoughts, and feelings of a Christian culture are formed and carried by the language of the Scriptures.” So, when the evangelical church intentionally or unintentionally exchanges the biblical definition of a word as important as justice with a counterfeit, it is no small matter. Ideas have consequences, but as Os Guinness reminds us, they also have antecedents—that is, they come from somewhere. The true definition of justice finds its source in the Bible and has expressed itself historically in ways that have blessed nations.”

Blessed nations are made up of blessed peoples who have experienced for themselves the freedom that is found in Jesus Christ. Equality precedes justice and Dr. King understood when you take away someones ability to choose for themselves they are no longer free but slaves. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. not only saw the injustices perpetrated against much of the black community, being black himself, he experienced it first hand and dedicated his life to human equality where mankind would no longer be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. In his famous “I have a dream” speech in no way was Dr. King diminishing the distinction between the races, as a black pastor himself he knew that all men were created equal before God and that unity is best celebrated in diversity not in conformity. Dr. King knew that equality would never be realized through legislation but by transformation, a change of heart brought about by repentance not reparation.

So, on this day where we remember and celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. may we realize afresh, “that our worldviews determine not only how we think, but how we act. They drive the choices we make. They act like the roots of a fruit tree. The roots determine the fruit.” Unfortunately, many Christians have largely absorbed the assumptions of ideological social justice unaware. After all, it uses biblical words and concepts such as justice, oppression, antiracism, and equality, yet it stealthily redefines them all. To recognize a counterfeit, you have to first know the genuine article” (Scott Allen). In honoring Dr. Kings legacy may our lives be shaped by the same book that shaped his own, the very Word of God.
 

“How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to your word.”

Psalm 119:9


I LOVE YOU!

Michael Osthimer

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