About Jesus Steve Sweetman
And The King's Way
Warren is wrapped in controversy over a group in his congregation called
"The King's Way". Read
his blog at; http://saddleback.com/blogs/newsandviews/
attempting to find common ground with Muslims is popular these days.
To me this demonstrates the Biblical illiteracy that is now
common place among Christians. I
turn to the apostle Paul to see what the Bible says about this issue.
Paul dealt with priests, politicians, and yes, with pagans as
priests, Paul "reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining
and proving that the Christ had to suffer and rise from the dead".
(Acts 17:2) Paul wasn't
seeking any common ground with an apostate Judaism.
Instead, from Scripture, he reasoned, explained, and proved, that
Jesus was their Christ.
politicians, Paul acknowledged Felix as governor.
"I know that for a number of years you have been a judge
over this nation". (Acts 24:10)
It was proper for Paul to make this acknowledgment, but after
showing respect, he got right to the point.
He preached "Jesus Christ and the judgment to come".
(Acts 24:25) Felix was
willing to free Paul from prison if Paul would just slip him a few bucks
under the table, but Paul refused. (Acts 24:26)
He also refused to compromise the truth of the gospel.
He maintained this stance all the way to the supreme court in Rome.
another politician named King Agrippa, Paul said, "I was not
disobedient to the vision from heaven … I preached that they (Jews and
Gentiles alike) should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance
by their deeds. (Acts 26:19-20 ) Without
compromise, Paul then turned to the king, looked straight into his eyes
and said, "do you believe the prophets? … I pray God that not
only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am
…" (Acts 26:27-30) Paul
hit a king right between the eyes with a fist full of uncompromised
gospel truth. Politicians
were to become like Paul, not Paul like the politicians.
concerning polytheistic pagans, Paul "reasoned" with them in
the market place. (Acts 17:17) He
said, "I see that in every way you are very religious … I found
an altar with the inscription 'to the unknown god'".
(Acats 17:22-23) Using their own pagan symbol as a starting point, Paul preached
the Lord Jesus Christ without compromise. In
Acts 17:30 he boldly told these pagans that in the past "God overlooked
their ignorance, but now He commands all people everywhere to
repent". There's no
common ground, no compromise here, just a message of pure unadulterated
8 and 10 gets to the bottom of this issue.
1 Corinthians 8:4 introduces the subject by saying, "about
food sacrificed to idols…" Jews
weren't allowed to eat food that had been offered to idols, but with the
introduction of the New Covenant, Paul said that "idols are nothing
… there is no God but one … there is one God, the Father … there
is but one Lord, Jesus Christ".
(1 Corinthians 8:6) Pagans
had it all wrong.
though idols are nothing, just lifeless objects, Paul said that
"the sacrifices offered of pagans are offered to demons … I do
not want you to be participants with demons …" (1 Corinthians
10:19) He also said,
"if an unbeliever invites you to a meal … eat whatever is put
before you without raising questions of conscience …", something
that was previously not permitted.
(1 Corinthians 10:25 -27)
what Paul is saying. Idols
are just pieces of wood or stone. They're
no big deal. So, eating food
that has been offered to an idol while at your pagan neighbour's house
for lunch is no big deal either. However,
if you eat the same food in the context of your pagan neighbour's
worship service, that's a very big deal.
This act of eating becomes an act of demon worship.
This point is fundamental to the issue at hand.
Christians can be friends with Muslims, eat with them, reason with them,
invite them to a Bible study, and call it the "King's Way".
However, we cannot try to find a common ground between
Christianity and Islam that doesn't
exist. And, what we can never
is gather with Muslims in a joint worship service, as some are now
doing. That's demon worship.
Instead, like Paul, we call everyone everywhere, including
Muslims, to repentance and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.
is one God. He is the God
and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, who Muslims don't worship.
All other so-called gods are demons, and Christians don't worship
demons for the sake of unity.
It's that simple. This isn't
intolerant. It's the "King's Way" of relating to Muslims.
It's not a matter of attempting to find common ground that doesn't exist. The "King's
Way" is to lead Muslims to the cross, where the Lord Jesus Christ,
God's Son, shed His blood for them.