Archive for April 10th, 2007

A Word from Tom White

April 10, 2007

I read an article today that was recently published in The Voice of the Martyrs newsletter (April 2007). It was written by Tom White, director of VOM, and is quite cutting to my own Disney Land of Christianity. It is titled, “The Thorns and the Record Player.” This is what he wrote concerning what he gleaned from the Scriptures, the Cross, and Bonhoeffer’s words about it:

“In Meditations on the Cross, Dietrich Bonhoeffer comments about Jesus’ prophecy of His own rejection (Mark 8:31-38). ‘Rejection robs suffering of any dignity or honor. It is to be suffering void of honor’ (p. 11-12).

The first time in Scripture when Jesus mentioned His future Church (congregation), His own future church member did not like this because it was linked to suffering. Peter, the newly named rock, was offended (Matthew 16, Mark 8). Bonhoeffer writes, ‘…from its very inception, the Church itself has taken offense at the suffering Christ. It neither wants such a Lord nor does it, as the Church of Christ, want its Lord to force upon it the law of suffering…. Satan has crept into the Church. He wants to tear it away from the cross of its Lord…the cross is not adversity, nor the harshness of fate, but suffering coming soley from our commitment to Jesus Christ.’

If we Christians are hoping to receive some form of respect from the world for our gracious, continual verbal witness–in the workplace, in school, among relatives, on the street–then we have rejected the path of the Cross and our society is doomed.

The same Satan who tempted Peter into attacking Jesus attacks us today by trying to pull us into similar routes of selfishness. The devil is not intimidated by our shouting, ‘Get thee behind me Satan!’ if we, like Peter, are intimidated by the way of suffering and exclaim, ‘Get Thee behind me Jesus!'” (p. 2).

Thank you Tom White and VOM for helping my American eyes to grasp the truth of the cross of Jesus Christ.