Rebranding Christianity - A different perspective

As I'm reading the Rebranding Christianity book by Jeff Jones and writing these posts, I can hear the objections in my head. It can sound like Jones is suggesting that the church should work to secure favor with those outside our faith. There are many evangelical churches who feel it's better to hold the line tight, to be in the world, but not of the world. They proceed from the idea that we are called to be different and to stand up for righteousness. Jesus was certainly an offense to many. So much so that they killed him violently. Jesus promised his followers that they would also endure hardship and be persecuted for righteousness's sake. And to be honest, many congregations think the church has already compromised too much. They feel the church is too liberal, too accommodating, and has become too much like the world. They see the values and traditions they cling to slowly being eroded and changed. 

I agree with much of that, and I get it. I wrestle with those same challenges. Here is a couple important point to think about.

  1. Holding firm to God's Word and standing for righteousness does not necessitate alienating people in our communities.
  2. The core message of the Gospel is the good news of God's love and the restoration of humanity. We need to stop selling the bad news and start selling the good news.
  3. Some congregations tend to keep outsiders at a distance. They put up barriers as protection against the influence of the world. This also means the authenticity of their spiritual lives goes unchallenged.
  4. Learning to trust the leading of the Holy Spirit is essential. Move into communities and people's lives allowing him to guide you. Be open to learn and let him teach you in every situation. It's not possible to compromise your faith or condone a person's sin when you're walking in the Spirit.
  5. It is possible to follow Christ wholeheartedly and still share genuine selfless love and kindness to the world. Of course it is!

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