Wednesday, October 18, 2006

since you've been gone

The world hated Jesus. The world hates Jesus. He promised the disciples that the world would also hate us. So it should come as no surpise that Gospel focussed proclamation mission teams from one end of the country to the other are 'under attack' at the moment.

From the Facebook protests to articles in The Times, there has been controversy over the plans of Edinburgh University CU to run the PURE course. The aforementioned article is a poor piece of journalism...having done PURE i'm not sure it claims to 'cure' homosexuality. The point of PURE is to help Christians (that is CHRISTIANS the course is not evangelistic, unbelievers can live how they want) pursue holiness, as we are called to do, though Gospel focused Bish points out, thats the only way to do it. I found it helpful and continue to find it helpful. It's a sad reflection of society when one group can force it's views on another without much effort. I am pleased to hear that Edinburg will still be running PURE. Well done brothers.

On page 11 of today's Daily Telegraph, an article that runs to barely two hundred and fifty words talks about Exeter University CU being removed from their Guild. Now, most of my time involved with CUs has been with one that isn't part of the Students Union anyway, so i'm probably not in the best place to comment. Exeter CU were forced to change their name to 'Evangelical CU' on the basis of the complaint of one person, and that was only the start of it. It appears from the Telegraph article that the final straw for the CU was refusing to stop using the DB...particulaly asking their speakers to sign it.

Now, i love the truth in the DB...i would go to the stake for most of it. And i think running PURE is a brilliant thing for CUs to do, so a hearty well done to EdUCU and ExUCU. Also, those who want to live a Godly life, as these two CUs clearly do, will be persecuted. In Acts the early believers rejoiced that they had been counted worthy to suffer for the Name. And i hope people in Edinburgh and Exeter are doing just that. It's an honour to stand shoulder to shoulder with people like this in a broad Christian sense and in a particular UCCF sense. We can expect this sort of persecution to increase in frequency and harshness, as long as we keep standing on the rock of the Gospel.

So lets pray for Edinburgh and Exeter, pray that they would continue to live and speak for Jesus, pray that they would be an awesome witness to non Christians during this time, and that first and foremost, they would continue to focus on Jesus, and stick to the Gospel.

Update: From the Exeter CU website


thebluefish said...

...and when someone comes along to protest a differing view of "Evangelical" that excludes them....

A non-evangelical Christian said...

... and let us also pray that the ECU at Exeter can learn to stop discriminating against non-evangelical Christians (telling life-long Christians they are going to Hell because they disagree with the doctrinal basis and that sort of thing) and instead start living alongside the other Christian groups on campus with an air of peace, love and understanding.

FloydTheBarber said...

So, it's ok to discriminate against evangelicals, but not against non-evangelicals? I see.

why don't we pray that all Christians would unite behind the core truths found in the Bible, that they would stand firm for the Gospel in the face of opposition and thay we would be a 'soli Deo gloria' people...

a non-evangelical christian said...

What discrimination against evangelicals?

As for praying that all Christians would unite behind "the core truths found in the Bible", the problem is that the ECU at Exeter has decided that being Evangelical gives them AND ONLY THEM a God given right to decide what those truths are. If a non-evangelical Christian dares suggest different interpretations they are immediately rejected as not-quite-Christian.

The type of unity which comes from excluding anyone who disagrees with you is not a type I think is worth praying for. I prefer the type of unity in which individuals accept each other dispite their differences.

FloydTheBarber said...

Depends what those differences are though isn't it? Hard to see how people who think the Bible is the infallible word of God and the last word of authority on any issue could find unity with those who don't.
Same with those who deny the uniqueness of Christ.
Obviously Christians who disagree on non-essentials (spiritual gifts etc) can unite, and that can be a wonderful thing... see the T4G Conference.
As for 'what discrimination against evangelicals?' surely thats whats happening here?

a non-evangelical Christian said...

How is asking a society which self identifies as evangelical and bans non-evangelicals from full participation to market itself as an Evangelical Christian Union discriminatory?

For it to call itself the Christian Union and then ban many branches of Christian belief, that is far more discriminatory.

I think you have summed up the entire issue very well yourself: "Hard to see how people who think the Bible is the infallible word of God and the last word of authority on any issue could find unity with those who don't." If it is this evangelical belief which prevents evangelicals from uniting with non-evangelicals then Christian Union is an incorrect name. If non-evangelicals are excluded because of an evangelical belief then the correct name for the society is Evangelical Christian Union.

Exeter University Guild of Students has a policy which prevents discrimination and promotes equal opportunities. According to that policy no subset of Christianity has the right to decide what the "essentials" of Christianity are and discriminate according to that decision.

Of course as evangelicals you have a right to believe that the Bible is the infallible word of God and the last word of authority on any issue, but you do not have the right to deny anyone who disagrees with you the freedom to associate with Christianity, especially when such a belief is one which is held by less than 30% of the world's Christians.

FloydTheBarber said...

I'm not sure any CU *bans* branches of Christian belief, certainly while i was at uni some people who regulaly attended couldn't sign a statement of faith, it just meant they couldn't vote or be in a leadership role...but i think it's fair enough that a CU has a statement of faith that all members have to sign...otherwise where do you draw the line?

I could say a lot more, but i'm not sure this dialogue is particulaly fair, given you know more or less everything about me, and i nothing about you.