Jesus and his disciples were not granted religious freedom, nor was that their priority. Regardless of a nation’s favor, the primary mission of Jesus was to share the good news of salvation. Join us this week as Daniel Montañez, professor for the Hispanic Ministries Program at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, discusses religious freedom in the context of the early church.
If the Church can learn anything from the recent shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, TX, it is that persecution is a scary and painful thing to endure. When we witness persecution, especially within the Church , we often resort to political responses rather than Christian responses. Perhaps this is because we don’t know how to respond as Christians. Join with us as we discover ways in which we, as a Church, can respond to persecution in a way that allows Christ to work through us.
The new Martin Scorcese film Silence (set at the end of the era of Jesuit missions in Japan in the mid-16th Century) is loaded with theological elements from various sects within and beyond the Christian traditions. Scorcese effectively and powerfully puts the viewer into the mind and heart of the Jesuit priests and the Japanese Christians, each of whom is asked to renounce their faith in Christ or suffer. Would Christianity today be able to survive the same persecution from several centuries ago?
When we stop looking at Syrian refugees as an uncountable and immeasurable entity and start looking at each individual refugee as someone with a story, with a life, and loved by God, our perspective on the refugee problem shifts dramatically. Before we can properly tackle the question of “what do we do with the refugees”, we have to take time to understand who the refugees truly are.