On Wednesday, Pastors and Elders across our denomination were invited to view a webinar hosted by the EPC General Assembly Moderator, Case Thorp.
The key takeaway from the webinar came from Rufus Smith, a black EPC pastor with a long history of leading multi-ethnic and intergenerational ministry. He presented our obligation to view race and injustice in biblical terms. Pastor Rufus doesn't find the language of social theory and politics to be helpful for a ministry of reconciliation. Pastor Rufus' thoughts are expressed at the 20 and 26 minute marks.
And truthfully, scripture is more convicting and demanding than the tenents of any political movement we may aspire to. Pastor Rufus' thoughts are expressed at the 20 and 26 minute marks.
The title of the Webinar begs a question for Pastors and Ruling Elders: How do we lead congregations in issues of race and injustice? We lead with, and through, scripture. In scripture, we start with being created in the
image of God
, we face the consequences of our
fall into sin
, we hear the cries of the prophets who call us back to
, we are overcome by
the love and grace of Christ
at the cross, and overtaken by
at the sight of the resurrected Christ. Now is the time to foreshadow the day when every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. (Phil 2:10-11, Rom 14:11)
The whole webinar is worth watching. If you have questions, contact me directly. In the meantime, I called Pastor Gary Koerth in the Idora neighborhood of Youngstown. If you recall, he pastors a new church in a racially diverse neighborhood. COVID changed how he does ministry and he reports that ministry has gone to a deeper level. I also ask you to keep the Honduras Hope ministry in in your prayers as COVID has had devastating effects in Honduras.
With the love of Christ,