Beale Responds to Charlottesville
On Sunday, pastor Jonathan Davis called on Beale Memorial Baptist to resist the hatred on display in our culture by living lives of love, and building relationships across lines that often divide our culture. This year, Beale celebrates 45 years on local radio, and everyone present for worship was invited to consider what message they are broadcasting to the world, and what message the church is called to broadcast to the world.
Music in both services yesterday focused on God’s Kingdom, the call of the church to serve as witnesses to God’s love, and asking God to heal our land. Beale held a special time of prayer for the victims of Saturday’s terrorist attack, for fellow believers in Charlottesville (and their pastors) trying to worship after a weekend of turmoil, asking God to heal our broken culture and bind up our deep wounds.
The Gospel of Christ calls us to lay aside all forms of hatred and malice towards others. There is absolutely no place for toxic ideologies like Nazism, white nationalism, racial superiority, or anarchism in the church. In speaking out against the ideologies on display in Charlottesville this past weekend, pastor Jonathan joins other area pastors (and countless pastors around the nation) in denouncing bigotry in all its forms.
Before followers of Jesus were called “Christians,” they were simply known as “the Way.” the activities and vile hatred on display in Charlottesville this past weekend is anything but the Way of Christ.
Pastor Davis reminded Beale on Sunday that “The Way of Christ is the Way of self-giving love. The Way of Repentance. The Way of loving our enemies and praying for them. The Way of Peace. The Way of embracing allegiance to God’s kingdom and laying down our pride, and our idols.”
Whoever says, “I am in the light,” while hating a brother or sister, is still in the darkness. 1 John 2:9 (NRSV)
This is a Gospel issue. If we have darkness and hatred in our hearts, we are not in Christ. Racism (past or present) is not something to joke about, make light of, or profit off of. It demands forceful rejection by leaders in every area of church life, and of leaders at all levels of government – local, state, and national.
Many have asked for a transcript of yesterdays message, and so below is a detailed outline of the sermon, including all the Scriptures referenced in worship.Acts 19, Broadcasting the Message