Digging in Deeper: Matthew 5:43-44

“You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” (CSB – Read the chapter)

I don’t mind owning the fact that I am pretty deeply influenced by the thinking, preaching, and writing of Andy Stanley. I’ve been engaging with his teaching for every bit of the last twelve years for sure and maybe longer, so I guess that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. And I really don’t listen to any other preaching. I should, but I only have time for so many podcasts. In any event, Andy has a new book out that I am just nearly through reading. It’s called Not In It to Win It: Why Choosing Sides Sidelines the Church. It’s brought together several ideas that have been cooking in the back of my mind for several weeks into one well-argued package. Let me process some of this with you.

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Morning Musing: Ephesians 6:12

“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens.”‬ ‭(CSB‬‬ – Read the chapter)

Who is your enemy? Now maybe you’re saintly enough that your response to that question is some version of, “I don’t have any enemies.” Granting that, who comes closest to that status for you? If you’re at all like a growing segment of our society, the answer just may be the people on the other side of the political aisle. In our hyper-partisan times, political rivals are among the most bitter enemies we have. The latest entry from Marvel Studios offers an important counterpoint to this decidedly unhealthy trend. Let’s talk today about Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

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Digging in Deeper: Galatians 3:27-29

“For those of you who were baptized into Christ have been clothed with Christ. There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female, since you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, heirs according to the promise.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Well, that was…anticlimactic. I stayed up until about 11:30 last night watching returns come in from the election and this morning when I checked back in I knew basically nothing more than I did when I went to bed. At least, that’s the case in terms of the results of the election. What I did have confirmed for me is something that I already knew. If you’ll stay with me for a few minutes, I’ll tell you about what that is.

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Election Day 2020

The day has finally arrived! Are you excited? Are you anxious? Today is the day when…the political ads finally stop rolling in like the waves of the sea. Oh wait, I mean this is the day when we in the United States of America get to exercise our right as citizens of this great nation to cast our vote. We get to decide who our leaders will be. Consider what a unique thing that is in the history of the world. Ours is a heritage unlike any other this world has known. No other nation has ever seen as long and unbroken a string of peaceful transfers of power from one person to another, one party to another, one political foe to another as we have. As we move forward together into this momentous day, here are some thoughts and a prayer to send us on our way.

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Let’s Talk about the Issues

We’ve been talking for the last three weeks about how followers of Jesus should think about engaging with the politics of their culture wherever they happen to be. The short version is that our engagement should always be considered through the lens of the Gospel. But, how should we actually think about the various issues at stake in this or any election? That’s what we’re going to talk about today. Thanks for tuning in as we continue our series, Being Good Kingdom Citizens.

Let’s Talk about the Issues

We need to make this election about the issues! How many times have you heard a politician use that line before? Probably more times than you’d care to count! And when a politician says something like that, what is usually the furthest thing from his mind? The issues, right? If you’re like me and more than a little bit cynical about politicians and politics, you hear that phrase as a kind of code language. It’s a code for: I know I’ve got this gigantic personal or political scandal going on over here and which should probably totally disqualify me from running for office, much less actually be deserving of your vote, but I’m not willing to give up this chance for power, and so I’m raising the red herring of talking about issues on which I disagree markedly with my opponent in hopes that it will distract you from paying attention to the man behind the curtain and rile you up to vote for me anyway.

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