Aug 3, 2011

That's My Final Answer...

There was a time when news like this (Anderson Cleared for Ordination) used to pain me, bother me, disturb me.

There was a time when I didn't understand how a church that professes to love and honor Jesus and his teaching could approve of something that the Bible so clearly calls sin.

Sadly, when I come across news like this now, it no longer surprises me. It no longer hurts me.

The day when I used to believe that the denomination represents me, speaks for me are long gone. Decisions like this (More Light Presbyterians - "Today We are Through with Judging and Open to Love") of the PC(USA) clearly demonstrate that either I am totally out of touch with the national church, or that the national church has so departed from historical orthodox faith that it no longer even resembles the church I once loved.




Regardless of what the denomination may declare, the Bible is still crystal clear about homosexuality. That will never change.

What is truly sad is that when I see news like this about the PC(USA) now, it only shows how out of touch the denomination is with where I and my local church are as Christ-followers.

God is still God. Nothing's changed.

As long as I am alive and breathing, me and my church will continue to proclaim the goodness of the crucified risen Christ who frees all people from all bondage and all sin. That is the good news of Jesus Christ and I am sticking to it.

That's my final answer!

18 comments:

Chris Enoch said...

This is beautifully put.
I also have that certain numbness (or is it wariness???)to what seems to be happening, its far beyond the incredulity that I used to feel.
Yet, I share in that final answer. Our Lord has not changed, the Word remains certain -and that is what I'll continue to share and preach.
God bless you....

Dave Moody said...

Amen, great post. Thanks brother.

James Kim said...

Chris, thanks for your comment. It really is sad when we are no longer surprised and distressed by things things that are disturbing. Blessings as you proclaim Christ!

Your brother in Christ,
James <><

James Kim said...

Thanks Dave! Blessings.

Leslie Day-Ebert said...

Ah, James - isn't it sad that we're not surprised anymore? I guess I'm still mildly disappointed but feeling more and more removed from it with each passing day and each vote that occurs. Bless you for your faithfulness and for your post! In Christ, Leslie Day-Ebert

James Kim said...

Leslie, good to hear from you. It really is sad that we are no longer saddened nor surprised by what the denomination is doing. The good news is that God is still at work to bring about his purposes. Blessings to you!

James <><

Pastor Dennis said...

A good word and well said. My own experience in the Presbyterian Church as a high school and college kid in the 60's and early 70's was of a church that didn't really believe. My home pastor didn't believe in the resurrection and his favorit saying about the Bible (as I remember it) was "it ain't necessarily so." And it seems that this was not unusual among people in the ministry. When I got to seminary I was surprised that there was more faith and orthodoxy than I expected. I never expected the church to represent me.

James Kim said...

Thanks for your comment Pastor Dennis. Appreciate your thoughts.

James <><

robert austell said...

"As long as I am alive and breathing, me and my church will continue to proclaim the goodness of the crucified risen Christ who frees all people from all bondage and all sin. That is the good news of Jesus Christ and I am sticking to it."

Amen and me, too!

Thank you, James. It is an encouragement to know you are there, and I am especially glad for the opportunity to connect at Big Tent.

Paul Masters said...

I think what we are seeing is evidence of 2 radically, and mutually incompatible understandings of the Gospel. One side preaches the transformative love of Jesus Christ: that we are loved, forgiven and then transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit into the people God desires us to be. The other side preaches the love and grace of Jesus Christ, but emphasizes the radial inclusion of the Body of Christ. There is no transformation expected, for we are loved just as we are. One path leads to discipleship and being used by the Holy Spirit to help build the Kingdom of God; the other leads to narcissism and ultimately idolatry.
Bottom line, we have a choice down which path we trod- and which path we lead our people. God bless you in your ministry

James Kim said...

Robert, it was good to connect with you as well. Know that you are a blessing to me. Blessings! See you in Minneapolis.

James <><

Noel said...

With you all the way James.

Sarah Hill said...

Amen, James. You said it so well. Thank you! May God bless us with wisdom and courage in the coming days.

Sarah Hill said...

Amen, James. You said it so well. Thank you! May God bless us with wisdom and courage in the coming days.

Linda Lee said...

Thanks for sharing your journey - it is so helpful.
This latest blog reminds me of Jehoshaphat who got reports of an army coming against Judah. The first thing he did was call the peoople together to "seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek Him." Jehoshaphat prayed and God spoke saying "don't be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God's"
Maybe that is why the "bad" reports don't bother us as much any more, because we know it is God's battle.

Jehosephat response was to worship, call the people and encourage them: "Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld...: and people were appointed to sing praise to the Lord."
2 Chronicles 20.....
Wow - like you, their esponse was worship.

Isn't that the place we are at now, needing to draw closer to God.
So my hope is that the Fellowship will be like Jehoshaphat and Judah and see that God will give us cause to rejoice, to praise, to worship and like the kingdom of Jehoshaphat find "peace, for his God had given him rest on every side." 2 Chronicles 20:30 God has a plan, I believe He can show us.
God can do great things when our first response is to seek Him, so thanks for your encouragement. It is just what we need.

Anonymous said...

It's an intriguing phrase, Rev. Kim: "As long as I am alive and breathing, me and my church will continue to proclaim the goodness of the crucified risen Christ who frees all people from all bondage and all sin."

In the reformed tradition I learned, "my church" is not simply the particular local congregation in which I worship. "My church" is the larger connection of congregations bound together in the fellowship of the Presbytery and the partnership of the General Assembly. That's what set reformed Christians apart from congregational Christians like the Baptists, who, when the convention does something embarrassing, can convincingly argue "the actions of the members of the larger convention do not necessarily represent us."

In the Presbyterian tradition, the unity of the church means the actions of any governing body of the church are the actions of all the governing bodies. Or as I often heard it put, the General Assembly (or Presbytery) is not them but us; they did not do it, but we did.

I've read your firm and continued loyalty to the PCUSA as your church in previous posts. I am curious about how you reconcile that with the firm declaration in this post.

Thanks for listening
P Johnston

James Kim said...

Paul, Noel, Sarah, and Linda. Thank you all for reading and posting your reflections. Appreciate you for engaging.

Blessings!

James <><

James Kim said...

P Johnston, thank you for your thoughts. You make excellent points. I started writing a response back to you and decided to write a blog in response to your questions. Thank you for reading and thank you for your thoughts. Would love to hear your thoughts on the new post.

Blessings!

James <><