The men and women who comprise the great secular exchanges of knowledge often scowl at those who put forward the notions of universal truth. The exchange hums about on the premise that all ideas contain the same amount of truth or (if you will, error). Though an idea could be labeled useful by society, its true value remains nothing more than the cultural valuation of a shifting time. Today’s truth maybe tomorrows error. A world without truth, must becomes a world without judgement. No philosopher, teacher, or child has to condemn another person’s perspective for all ideas arise from the same sponginess of nothing.
The elites who manage the marketplace of knowledge often require Christians to abandon their claims of universal truth at home prior to entering the debate. After all most of the secular world abided by a no solicitation policy. Though the world requires Christians to affirm that Christianity is just one of the many members on the COEXISTS bumper sticker striving for greater meaning, Christians cannot agree to abandon their universal claims. They must speak up.
Jesus the Tribal Deity
In some ways, the God of the Bible does resemble a tribal deity concerned about the wellbeing of a small subset of the world’s population. In Genesis, Exodus, and the prophetic books, God repeatedly promised “I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they will be my people (Jer. 31:1).” In the New Testament, God extends his promises to include the church comprised of men and women who trusted in the work of the revealed Messiah, Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:25b-27 declares, “Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.” At first glance, The biblical God appears to love his people in much the same way Zeus loved Greece.
Jesus the Ruler of the Universe
But the God of the Bible claims to be more. The first sentence in the Bible proclaims, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” The whole world is God’s world. Colossians 1:16 strengths the ideas of Genesis, reporting,
For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.Colossians 1:16
Why does God prioritize the nation of Israel and then the church?
Jesus invests in the Jewish and then the Christian tribe for the express purpose of seeing the whole world come to Christ. When Adam and Eve sinned and found themselves exiled from the Garden, the marketplace of ideas became corrupt. Instead of spreading the peace and love of God throughout the world, the children of Adam and Eve spread hate and evil. Wherever the human race went, death followed.
God established the nation of Israel and then the church to combat the virus of sin through the spread of truth. God declared that the nation of Israel was to be a “light for the nations (Is. 42:6).” After Jesus’s death and resurrection, the Church picks up the mantle of kingdom expression. Mathew 28:19-20 defines the mission of the church as follows,
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.Matthew 28:19-20
God created a tribe, and then a church to reestablish his kingdom, overcoming “evil with good (Rom. 12:21).” God promises that this campaign will succeed. Micah 4:1-2 concludes,
It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and it shall be lifted up above the hills; and peoples shall flow to it, and many nations shall come, and say: “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
The Christian cannot be content to keep his or her faith within the confines of their homes because they God of the Bible lays claim not just to the Christians home or to the Christians neighborhood but to the world. Jesus proclaims:
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.Acts 1:8
The Christian must speak of his or her God in the marketplace of ideas for his or her God is not a tribal deity but the God of the universe. The famed scholar Abraham Kuyper correctly, noted the Christian Religion, “concerns the whole of our human race.” Friends, we cannot agree silence. We must share the whole Jesus with the whole world.
Are you speaking?