Sitting On The Sidelines

Nobody wants to be found sitting on the sidelines.  That means you are not playing, even though you are on the team.  It means that the hours of practice are not helping you.  It means that you are not making a difference in the outcome of the event.


We, Christians, have to stop sitting on the sidelines of world events.  I am not talking about getting involved in politics.  A man I worked for used to say “politics never raised anyone from the dead.”  Of course, the only movement that has ever raised anyone from the dead is the movement that was founded by Jesus—not the church, but Christianity.


How do we stop sitting on the sidelines?  It does not take big actions.  There was a movie recently that talked about changing the world through one act of random kindness at a time.  While I think that is a simplistic view of how to change the world, there is some truth in it.  We have to get back to the place where every little thing we do is done for the purpose of changing the world.


Look at the apostles, they had been with Jesus, they had seen how He moved through the world, they had seen the changes He brought to a world that was not looking for His brand of change.  They did not get bogged down in the politics of the day.  They did not get bogged down in meaningless social programs.  Everything they did came back to behaving like Jesus behaved.


That means they had to change people’s lives where they met them, on the street.


You seldom meet people who need radical change in the church on a Sunday morning.  Sure, there are always people needing help, but the apostles were not hiding in a building.  They were forced to live out in the open areas where hurting people, people with real problems were living.


In his book Churchshift, Sunday Adelaja, pastor and founder of the largest evangelical church in Europe, gives us an important look regarding what we should be doing to change the world around us:


“The Great Commission is not what many of us have understood it to be.  We have understood it to be evangelism—bringing people from the world into our church buildings.  But the Great Commission mandate is to go out and disciple nations.  The focus is not in here but out there.  This was Jesus’s [sic] goal in coming to Earth.  It is supposed to be our goal as redeemed people.  The Great Commission in Matthew 28:19 says:  Go and make disciples of all nations.  Jesus did not say, ‘Go and build great churches.’  He did not even say, ‘Go and save individuals.’  He never said, ‘May thy church come on Earth as it is in heaven.’  Neither did He say, ‘Seek ye first the church and all its righteousness.’  Rather, His heartbeat is for nations to be ruled by kingdom principles.  That is the calling of every believer and of every church.”


How do we bring these lofty ideas down to a place where we can live them?  First, we must return to worshiping God rather than God’s creation.  The worship of creation, regardless of what the created object is, is paganism, pure and simple.


As we return to worshiping God we will naturally find ourselves doing the things He calls us to do and therein we begin to change the world around us.


It is not so much what we do, as what we worship.  For when we worship properly we will live properly.


1 Response to “Sitting On The Sidelines”

  1. 1 Robert 23 April 2008 at 5:38 pm

    Well put.

    It’s what Rob Bell calls “caring about the things God cares about.”

    Blessings, Robert

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C.S. LEWIS--Mere Christianity; CLAIRE BERLINSKI--Menace in Europe: Why the Continent's Crisis is America's Crisis, Too; BRUCE BAWER--While Europe Slept: How Radical islam is Destroying the West from Within; DAVID LEVERING LEWIS--God's Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215; THOMAS SCHIRRMACHER--The Persecution of Christians Concerns Us All; PHILIP JENKINS--God's Continent: Christianity, Islam, and Europe's Religious Crisis

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