9th June 10:16
When churches revive? (order authority year time)
For the week of May 29, 2005
A DAY FOR REMEMBERING
When churches revive?
To Read: Exodus 10-12
"And you shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout the
land to all its inhabitants; it shall be a jubilee for you, when each of you
shall return to his property and each of you shall return to his family."
The Congregationalists aboard the Mayflower with those who arrived a decade
later aboard John Winthrop's flagship Arbella had embarked on an adventure
in liberty. Liberty is in the DNA of the church. "Proclaim liberty
throughout all the land" was in the Bible before our founders inscribed it
on the Liberty Bell. When Israel sinned God revoked their liberties and sent
them as captives to Babylon. My father often remarked that hurting oneself
had one great advantage, it felt good to stop. When the Lord acted to help
Israel appreciate their liberty he did so by taking their freedom away for a
time. By such a loss they learned to appreciate liberty ever after.
Jesus came to liberate his people. In order to set his people free he needed
to remove the sin that caused our *******. Sin is our captor. Sin is an
alien nature. Because it is now our nature we cannot see it by looking at
ourselves. Sin seems to be the same as being human. We say, "Nobody's
perfect." A fish cannot detect water since it is the creature's natural
Congregationalists considered themselves called to make liberty real in the
church. Pastors served at the pleasure of the congregation. Monies were
voted by the fellowship. Neighboring churches fellowshipped with one
another, but had no authority over one another. These Congregationalists
translated their principles into a governmental form. The election of
leaders and the authorization of representatives of the people at town
meetings and in legislatures grew out of these church principles. When our
churches revive, the nation may follow our lead.