Stephen McAlpine offers some thoughts on the culture of seeking ratings and how that has been the downfall of some big names.
I think there is much to be said for this.
‘This month we crammed the full sum of our belongings into eleven 52.0 pound (23.6 kg) suitcases and plastic tubs (not counting carry ons or the cat) and threw the whole heavy bit on an airplane so we could (once again) call ourselves expatriates. Two years ago we took a strikingly similar trip in an airplane going the other direction so we could call ourselves repatriates.’
‘It is a well-known fact that state governments in Africa are deciding that enough is enough and are moving in to arrest the rot taking place, largely in Charismatic churches. The stench cannot be ignored any more. This has already begun to happen in Kenya under President Uhuru Kenyatta. South Africa and Zambia are also preparing legislation. It will not be long before other African nations join in.’
I think this was a good case for pressing on with these two forms of evangelism that far too many consider outmoded. I have made a similar defence of open air work in the past here. We also have a podcast episode coming out next week talking about doing just that in deprived communities.
Given we are midway through holiday season, this one resonated.
‘The sacrificial system was designed to restore the broken relationship between man and God. It existed for those who had sinned but who wished to confess their sin, turn from it and continue in a relationship with God. Those who defiantly disobey God’s law without concern are not just ‘breaking the rules’ but are in rebellion against God. It is not just a rejection of God’s law; it is a rejection of God himself. The reason there is no forgiveness for such people is that, ultimately, they don’t want to be in such a restored relationship. In effect, those who commit ‘high-handed’ sin are not true believers and are thus beyond salvation until such time as they repent and lay down their rebellion against God. This, however, led to a question. What do we say about those who fall away from the Lord? Are they saved or not? Can there be forgiveness for such people? Doesn’t Hebrews 10 suggest there is no way back for such people?’