The Sovereignty of God and Ethnic
Return to Main Page
What happens just before we fall
to temptation? We decide that the thing we desire is good for us. In essence,
we reenact the Fall (Genesis 3) every time we give into temptation. When Adam
and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, they were rejecting the Word of God as basis
Instead of taking people's lives,
God showed us grace - through the salvation offered at the Cross. Yet we still
suffer the effects of the Fall -- and one of these is human power struggles -
which is the basis of ethnic based strife and suffering.
The relationship between human
suffering and divine justice is called theodicy.... Most of us assume a one to
one relationship bewteen sin and suffering - - Job countered that bad things
that happen to us are not necessarily related to our sin any more than good
things that happen to us relate to our righteousness, of which we have
- Isaiah 64:6 - 6 All of us have
become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous
acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the
wind our sins sweep us away.
The Basis of
- The cause of suffering is
- Suffering from sin has 2
- Random effects of sin -
earthquakes, floods, wildfies, etc.
- Direct results of sin:
- Ungodliness - sinning and
suffering our own consequences - recklesness, laziness, irresponsibility,
- Oppression - sinning and forcing
others to suffer the consequences - oppression is driven by power
- One of the foundations of
oppression is judging others from a point of view that is not God's point of
view (If I am guilty of any of these, I will see others as inferior of
- Me-ism - judging others by the
standard of myself
- Cultural imperialism - judging
other cultures by the standard of my culture
- Sex-sim - judging the other
gender by the standard of my gender
- Racism - judging the other races
by the standard of my race
- Ethno-centrism - judging other
people groups by the standard of my people group
Christianity is the only religion
that calls favoritism - - what it is - - - sin:
- James 2:1-4 - James 2-
Favoritism Forbidden - 1My brothers, as believers in our
glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism. 2Suppose a man comes
into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in
shabby clothes also comes in. 3If you show special attention to the man wearing
fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the
poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my
feet," 4have you not discriminated among yourselves
and become judges with evil thoughts?
What should distinguish the Body
of Christ is gratitude to God for his saving grace - - and there should be 2
results - - the first is faith (trust), the second is works (the demonstration
of our faith and thanksgiving to Christ for His saving grace)....
Unfortunately, we don't do works very well.....
A major point of the author is
that Christians are a sub-dominant group in this world - - and, therefore, will
be subject to suffering:
- John 18 - 36Jesus said,
"My kingdom is not of this world. If it were,
my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is
from another place."
- Hebrews 11:13-16 - 13All these
people were still living by faith when they died. They
did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from
a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.
14People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their
own. 15If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they
would have had opportunity to return. 16Instead, they
were longing for a better countrya heavenly one. Therefore God is
not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.
- 1 Peter 1:17 - 17Since you call
on a Father who judges each man's work impartially, live
your lives as strangers here in reverent fear.
- 1 Peter 2:11 - 11Dear friends, I
urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to
abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.
As strangers and aliens, the body
of Christ should have no vested interest in the world system as it exists. We
should be completely focused on our sovereign God and His Kingdom. Thus, to identify with suffering should be as natural as
We have lost the concept of what
it means to be the worldwide church.
- Isaiah 58:6-8 - 6 "Is not
this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the
chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your
food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter when
you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and
blood? 8 Then your light will break forth like the
dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go
before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard
- Revelation 7:9-10 - The Great
Multitude in White Robes - 9After this I looked and there before me was
a great multitude that no one could count, from every
nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of
the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their
hands. 10And they cried out in a loud voice: "Salvation belongs to our
God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb."
Return to Main Page