It’s the time of the year when ‘hot issue’ spats percolate through to HQ
(Headquarters), for sympathy, support and occasionally resolution! Like
exasperated parents we pine for the children to ‘get along’. One side takes the line
that scripture derives from external inspiration and prescribes cultural
behaviour, others suggests that people inspired by God encoded conservative ambient
culture and is therefore the legitimate subject of revision by equally inspired people
in the current context.
Were Christmas trees in chancel the only issue, things might not be too bad,
however the difference in approach ultimately permeates to many international conflicts
and the fundamental-isation of politics in the United States at this time.
I recently dabbled in a book entitled “The seduction of Culture in German history”
which may seem pretentious, however it helped resolve a few things I have never quite
As a baby-boomer I have never been able to fathom how a whole nation became compliant
with Nazi dogma. In a similar vein, I never quite understood how so many otherwise
decent people went along with the discriminatory practice in Southern Africa. Closer
to home I am not sure why so many of us are so relaxed about military escapades fought
in our name, let alone the destruction of our planet. In each case the preservation
and elevation of Culture to religious proportions enables leaders to demonise those
who have different priorities and opportunities.
The recent film ‘Miss Potter’ which beyond being biographical is also an expose of
cultural development. Beatrix, like Adolf in the same era, had a well developed view
of Fine Art, and the aspiration to challenge cultural mediocrity. Unlike the Fuhrer,
the children’s author/illustrator had a liberating vista of an Eden restored which
contributed to her initiative in the preservation of our Lake District in contrast
to the destruction reeked by the despot.
The point of this musing is to encourage people to keep sight of who we and
those with whom we disagree might become in the earth made new. It makes a world
of difference to the way we resolve differences!
May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continued interest in the ministry
of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and to pray continued blessings for you and your
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had
disappeared. And the sea was also gone.
And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like
a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his
people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow
or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”
And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And
then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.”
Revelation 21:1-5 (NLT)
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither
male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”