|Written by Earl S. Johnson Jr.|
I have been rereading a book by Clarence Jordan (author of the Cotton Patch translations of the New Testament) entitled The Sermon On the Mount ( Judson Press, Revised, 1952). |
He was the founder of the Koinonia Farms in Americus, Georgia, and he draws attention to the great power Christians have in the community and the world. Instead of arguing that people do not believe anymore or that the church is weak and helpless, Jordan says that it has tremendous power that cannot be ignored. He puts it this way:
It is difficult to be indifferent to a wide-awake Christian, a real live [child] of God. It is even more difficult to be indifferent to a whole body of Christians. You hate them, or you can love them, but one thing is certain — you can’t ignore them.
They confront you with an entirely different way of life, a new way of thinking, a changed set of values, and a higher standard of righteousness. In short, they face you with the kingdom of God on earth, and you have to accept it or reject it.*
This is a good time to be a follower of Jesus Christ. It is a good time to believe in the good news of the gospel.
What kind of image of Christ do you exhibit to your family, your fellow church members, the people you work with, and the community? Are you hard to be ignored?
*Jordan, p. 36.
Earl S. Johnson Jr. is the pastor of First Church, Johnstown, N.Y., and adjunct professor of religious studies at Siena College.