The COTC Manifesto

This sunday we were looking at a barnstorming passage; Jesus’ woes to the Pharisees and Teachers of Law in Luke 11. You can find the sermon on the resources page.
I resisted the temptation to have a field day and instead tried to put our own house in order. This critique of the religious institutions of Jesus day seemed painfully relevant, and so I suggested six commitments based on the six woes that would form the basis for a manifesto for church on the corner.

UPDATE. This manifesto has provoked plenty of discussion (which is good!) but it is important to recognise that these commitments are not some random ideas, rather it is a direct translation of the six woes to the Pharisees in Luke 11 put into practice. Just wanted to clear that up!

One thought on “The COTC Manifesto

  1. Well, well, well! Church on the Corner and social justice! Who would ever have thoguht it. In my day, Bible bashing and indoctrinating people is all that was important to COTH, and social justice only got a look-in insofar as it helped get bums on seats. Am I to take it from this that the lot of you have grown up, or is this just a passing phase?

    There is nothing wrong with borrowing from business models for the internal running and organisation of church, providing the church doesn’t employ the less ethical practises of the business world, and rejects those ideas which would change it from church to non-church.

    Engagement with politics – particularly isssues of social justice – are essential if the church is going to be true to God. God, in Christ, loves each one of us – Christian and non-Christian alike. As Christians, we are called to imitate this God-like love by loving one another (Christians and non-Christians alike). Hence Jesus’ reduction of the OT law to two commandments – love God and love neighbour. These commands are inseperable – we cannot sincerely claim to love God if we hate our neighbour.

    Since failure to engage with social justice amounts to a disregard for neighbour, it also amounts to a disregard for God.

    Where the church does need to tread carefully in the SJ arena, however, is in ensuring that any appeal it makes or action it takes for social justice is driven by sound theological thinking, and rooted in sincere prayer, and not shaped by populist secular ideologies or fashion fads.

    Oh… and Pedro, the church has been divided for centuries. That is why we have so many different denominations today. Indeed, even a cursory glance reveals deep rifts within today’s Anglican denomination – e.g. over the issues of women and gay priests.

    Fortunately, God, who is infinitely wiser then any of us, is able to work these divsions – which seem so ugly and unpleasant to us – to his glory and our good (much as he did the rift between Ss Paul and Barnabus). So fear not my good man.

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