Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Barren Churches in Light of the Cross
“For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?” –Luke 23:31
Luke does a beautiful job in presenting the accounts of the Gospel while bringing forth theological significance of the history. In this passage Luke does a beautiful job bringing forth an eschatological meaning among the significant event of Jesus’ death on the cross. Women followed Jesus to the cross and they mourned and wailed because of the pain and suffering that were placed on Jesus. Jesus then turns to the crowd and addresses them as the “Daughters of Jerusalem” which is not just addressing women, but metaphorically addressing the universal church. Jesus states “do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. For the time will come when you will say, ‘Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed”. This statement is metaphorically significant to the Church today. Jesus tells them to weep for themselves, the church, and for those the church outreaches to (your children) because there will be a time when the Church will think that fruitless Churches (childless women, wombs that never bore, breasts that never nursed) are blessed.
In today’s society, we as a Church face this type of thinking. Society measures people by the things of this world (money, riches, fame) and technology has seeped into our society giving significance to the cyber world and not the real world and people. We are disconnecting from each other and clinging to the barren things of this world for hope and security. Churches water down the Gospel to make it appealing to the greedy and selfish society we live in, which eliminates the true saving power of the Gospel. Barren churches are rising up in our society today, teaching false doctrines such as the prosperity gospel and cheapening grace. Amongst all the worldly blessings we have, amongst all the worldly security we hold onto, we crave these barren Churches and crave false teachings for our selfish motives. Just as it states in verse 31, what will happen to our faith when the land is barren, when the worldly securities fall and crumble? Where will our church stand then?
It is our responsibility as a church to stand firm on the true teachings of Gospel and to clearly preach His word to those who are craving to find hope and salvation. 2 Peter 2:1-3 warns Christians to beware of Churches that are fruitless and barren. Jesus also warned the Church as He approached the cross to lay down His life for those who would stray away and betray all that He has done. The cross He bore gave significance to the role of the Church.
Prayer: Lord, as your Church in today’s society, it is our prayer that we closely examine ourselves in light of Your cross. Convict our hearts that we as your Church may be true to who You are and the Gospel. Help us to preach your Word not only through our words, but through our daily actions and help us to move from barren to fruitful people. Amen.
Thought for the Day: Barrenness to fruitfulness is the miracle of the Kingdom
Betty Vattakunnel, Trinity MTC, Houston
Theme of the week: Motherhood: Participation in God's plan