Gospel should change lives
‘Peculiar’ people unashamed of call to repentanceBy Luke Bennetch
We practice the holy kiss. We observe footwashing along with communion. We believe Jesus taught separation of church and state; therefore we don’t vote or participate in politics and protests. We believe Jesus taught us to trust God and not worldly securities, so we seek to avoid insurance when we can.
Yes, we are strangely different from mainstream Mennonites today. But you don’t have to go back too many generations to find these same practices in most Mennonite churches.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is a message of change. It is not an accommodation to current trends, thoughts, philosophies or practices of the world. It is not an easy gospel.
Could it be that some Mennonite churches today have embraced a gospel of tolerance and accommodation instead of the gospel that changes lives? We recommend every Mennonite church take a good look at the gospel they have embraced and compare it with the true gospel of Jesus Christ.
We fully understand that many people are not ready for the drastic change this gospel brings. We do not have large crowds gathering in our churches. Few people show up at our services, and fewer still accept this gospel and become a part of our group.
But we are not ashamed, because we knew it would be this way. Our Lord prepared us for this when he said, “Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matt. 7:14).
We are open to direction from the Word of God, but it is our sincere desire that the saving process would not go both ways as we witness in the city. We are not interested in accommodation and acculturation that moves us away from the gospel.
Why should we change our gospel? Shouldn’t this gospel change the lives of people who accept it?
Luke Bennetch is pastor of Bronx Mennonite Church.
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