Dream word – DECLARE
“Who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” NKJV.
In 2008 at the Lambeth Conference, the ten-year gathering of Anglican Bishops, both male and undecided, one liberal theologian there, whilst chatting to a reporter remarked that “He regarded Jesus as uniquely the son of God. But he said ‘have other religions encountered God working on earth? Yes. Has God done something salvific (opening the way to ultimate “salvation”) with them? Yes.’”Unfortunately, this kind of statement, especially when made in a multi-faith environment, does little to clarify the total uniqueness and absolute necessity of the declaration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all people.
Of course it must be acknowledged, that in other faiths where revealed truth has been received through the declarations of the tri-fold declarations of conscience, creation and the Word of God then, it is absolutely right and proper that this should be honoured and acknowledged. Even so, I like the way one Roman Catholic theologian approached what has been called Inter-Faith dialogue when he says, “The distinction between theological faith and belief in the other religions, must be firmly held. If faith is the acceptance in grace of revealed truth, which ‘makes it possible to penetrate the mystery in a way that allows us to understand it coherently,’ then belief, in the other religions, is that sum of experience and thought that constitutes the human treasury of wisdom and religious aspiration, which man in his search for truth has conceived and acted upon in his relationship to God and the Absolute.” In other words, other religions, though they might contain some revealed truth, are not built on revealed truth, but rather, on the aspirations of a human search for truth.
Remember tonight, that when the Scriptures tells us that “Jesus Christ is the way the truth and the life and that no man comes to the Father but by Him,”that this is an absolute metaphysical assertion. In other words, Jesus is the only way to God.
Through my lips, so very often, the declaration of this metaphysical assertion sounds nothing short of arrogance. However, it is also true that whenever a truth is checked for fleas, the doctrinal vet will always get his fingers nipped. Indeed, I have yet to come across a humble nit nurse. Even so, despite the failings of our sinful selves, this one way truth is so asserted toward us in the Scriptures that it is not open to debate but merely, open to declaration. Indeed, this all engulfing, cornerstone and capstone nugget of ultimate revelation demands a declaration, for there is a pursuance in its declaration and the power of Almighty God behind it.
For the Christian, even in all his fallen arrogance, dialogue must simply become the means of further declaration.
Listen: “Who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle - I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying - a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.” (1 Timothy 2:4-7 NKJV.)
Pray: Oh power of God to Salvation, O freedom declaration of Your inheritance of the nations, come dance upon our lips in commanding declaration, in Jesus name we pray, amen.
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