Listening To Our Nation

Listening To Our Nation

There is a seemingly obscure verse in the Old Testament, referencing a group in David’s army.  It says that the sons of Issachar were “men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do…” (1 Chronicles 12:32).  This is a powerful and relevant principle for the church today.  Christ-followers should be those who understand the times, with knowledge of what the church should do.  And it is grappling with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper (or internet!) in the other that will ensure that the church will speak the truth in love to our city, bringing light and hope.  Without engaging with the city, our message may be ignored, because it is not addressing people’s heart attitudes.  We want to be a church that understands the times so that we can bring the hope of the Gospel to as many people as possible.

The links below represent a range of political and social views.  And naturally, with that comes the disclaimer: Common Ground Church does not necessarily align to any of these views expressed in any of these articles.  We have chosen these to try bring a wide range of thoughts and opinions on the matter.  It is quite deliberate that there are difficult-to-hear statements.  We have not sanitized them or made them family-friendly.  The purpose of this resource is to help our thinking – to help understand the times.

And as you are reading, we encourage you to read this through the lens of scripture: how does the Bible speak to what is being shared?  How can you bring Truth to a conversation where someone is expressing these viewpoints?  How does the Gospel empower us to respond?

Another consideration is to reflect on what offends you in the articles.  Think through what steps on your toes, or what gets you angry.  Why does it make you defensive?  Is God trying to reveal a sinful attitude?

No, it is not an exhaustive study and there are many more articles that could be referenced.  But this is a start.  We trust that through this, you will draw closer to Jesus and live out his truth in our city.

LINKS TO LISTEN TO:

  • A view of the underlying sentiments behind the Rhodes must fall campaign and one key solution to it.
  • An article summarizing the various views regarding the Rhodes must fall campaign.
  • A piece written by a white South African, grappling with how to respond to the various accusations levelled at white people.  There are more questions than answers, but read through the response by Alexa for practical and helpful steps forward.  Marlyn’s response is very thought provoking and provides a countering view on the original article.
  • A perspective on the xenophobic violence and rhetoric from the viewpoint of a Nigerian woman who grew up in South Africa.
  • A challenging piece on how the Rhodes must fall campaign is symbolic of a wider spread frustration with inequality.
  • A challenging article, verbalising some of the perspectives that are fueling xenophobic violence.
  • An international perspective on how the term xenophobia is insufficient to describe the actions and rhetoric.

We want to hear your struggles with these issues. Email voice@commongroundchurch.co.za to share your thoughts. We won’t be able to get back to every mail, but this will help shape how we as Common Ground Church respond to the problems facing our country at present.

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