BK: People with different views attend church; after all, they come from diverse cultures, backgrounds and traditions. However, our aim is always to teach about Christ, his love and counsel. I take my direction from the Holy Spirit in Hebrews 12:14, ‘Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.’ There is always common meeting ground and, until the Lord Jesus comes, we have to live on this earth, so why not treat it with love? Jesus Christ talked in parables, and some of them referred to the treatment of his vineyard. He never said we should be the ones to destroy the planet. And in making our point we do not have to antagonise one another. Refocus your congregation on studying the word and engaging with the heart of the Father.
I'm so glad that William Wilberforce didn't agree with Mark Driscoll
JN: The Bible says that the earth is the Lord’s ? that’s the fundamental point here. I would want to ? in love ? seek to restore peace. You can either get wound up by people who are themselves wound up, or you can bring peace. Teach the people that the earth is the Lord’s and we need to look after anything that belongs to someone else, especially if it belongs to God. It’s not ours to trash. More importantly, the Bible says that we are Jesus’ disciples if we have love one for another, so let us love each other and show whose we are by the way that we do that.
VT: My first inclination is to teach the theological background for the arguments that are contained within this debate. I would also suggest, but not insist, that everyone reads Tom Wright’s book, Surprised by Hope (SPCK). It gives a very different view to Mark Driscoll’s apparently isolationist, terminationist position. His outlook leaves us in a place where we become isolated and alienated from the rest of the world because we think it’s all going to burn. Theologically that’s a disaster for evangelism, a disaster for individual change and a disaster for Christians who get locked in their own little world because it’s all ‘going down’
What Tom Wright says is to remember that you’re not going to go to heaven when you die. I love that line. His point is that heaven is coming down in the recreation of a new heaven and a new earth, and all that we do now is wrapped into that future. Theologically that’s really important for how we view the planet and what we’re doing in the world. I’m so glad that William Wilberforce didn’t agree with Mark Driscoll. Otherwise we could have said to slaves, ‘It’s all going to burn, who cares, it’s all over.’
Rev Betty King is founder of Betty King International Ministries Jo Naughton is Premier Christian Radio’s agony aunt and pastors a church with her husband jonaughton.com Rev Dr Viv Thomas is associate international director of Operation Mobilisation and honorary teaching pastor at St Paul’s, Hammersmith
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