Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Part I: The Cape Town Commitment: For the Lord we love...#4

We love God the Son
"We proclaim Christ.  In Christ alone God has fully and finally revealed himself, and through Christ alone God has achieved salvation for the world.  We therefore kneel as disciples at the feet of Jesus of Nazareth and say to him with Peter, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God,' and with Thomas, 'My Lord and my God.'"  The Cape Town Commitment, 15.

While in India, one cannot help but notice the many places where people slavishly worship things that are not God.  On this last visit, I visited the place where the Buddha allegedly achieved enlightenment.  While many of the non Asians were curious tourists like myself, there were others who had moved way beyond mere curiosity.  They had given themselves over (to steal a word from the Apostle Paul) to idolatry.

While Buddhism claims to be a philosophical denial of all forms of dependency rather than a religion with gods to be worshiped, devotees at Bodh Gaya clearly were performing acts of worship...with a price tag for these acts of devotion to boot!  It cost a pretty rupee to drape a silk cloth around the neck of the idols.  Gold covered statues and ancient stone stupas (a mound-like structure containing Buddhist relics) littered the compound...flowers and food were offered...to what if not a false god?

Then there are the Hindu temples, great and small  that fill the land with their brightly colored gods adorning their walls and roofs.  But one cannot cover up darkness with paint regardless of how bright.

Only the Light of the world that came into our world to reveal to us the one true God can remove the spiritual darkness as he alone defeated him who blinds the minds of those who do not believe.  Ah, but here's the rub.  We say to know him, but do we proclaim him?  Do we really shine out our lights in the world?

Think on this.  If every person who declares that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and their Lord...if everyone of them had to proclaim to the world that there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven by which we must be saved, how long will this darkness continue to rule in the hearts and minds of the lost?

May we all "commit ourselves afresh to bear witness to Jesus Christ and all his teaching, in all the world, knowing that we can bear such witness only if we are living in obedience to his teaching ourselves."

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