Is driving a luxury car a matter of preference & income, or a matter of Christian morality?
In an age, where people are destroying God’s good earth by their cravings for big fossil-fuel burning cars, beef, and every other extravagance that’s taken through exploitation and not stewardship; in an age where the forces of globalisation are not closing the gap but increasing the gaps between the rich and the poor- which thus betrays the righteousness of God’s Kingdom on earth, Jesus would probably be more pleased that we that we ask for the grace to do with less; far less. That is a true manifestation of people encountering the gospel of grace.
The time has come for first-world Christians to stop assuming their wealth is the definitive sign of God’s blessing over their lives. It is not. Far too much wealth is being created through the destruction of the earth’s climate and the neglect and exploitation of the world’s poor.
Is it not astonishing that much of the devastating climatic crises is not caused by purely natural climatic cycles but by the recklessness of human arrogance, greed, unbridled consumption, and the perpetually increasing levels of “wants” that are largely created by the global market system— in its innate need to increase those “wants” in order to achieve greater wealth for the most privileged players of global market, namely multi-national corporations?
Is it not astonishing that those who suffer the most from the devastating climatic crises which are ultimately rooted in the mindless abuse of the global environment primarily in the interest of world’s most affluent—are the “poor of the earth?”
But it is they— the “poor of the earth,” who upon turning to Jesus, are in their very poverty, the best examples for all ages of God’s grace; yea, the gospel of grace. For Jesus did say of them, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of heaven.” Do not misunderstand: They are not graced by God because they are poor. Poverty is caused by the devil. No, they in their material poverty are graced by God because when they turn to Jesus they become friends of God, in a world where the rich are not willing to be their friends.
The global market of this present evil age is led not by men but by demons and principalities in high places, who are intent on making the rich richer— by making the word’s poor, poorer and ever deeper trapped in the dark bowels of poverty. Bono gave the right word for this present hour: “The Church is going to have to become the conscience of the free market, if it’s to have any meaning in the world— and stop being its apologist.”
Jesus did not come to satisfy our every want. Jesus came to deliver us from evil and make us “signs” of the kingdom. His kingdom is coming. And when He comes, He will avenge every wrong. He will, because He will establish justice on the earth.
He came and said “repent.” “Change your mind. Change your direction. You are going the wrong way. Turn around and go the other way.” He came to that we might see the kingdom, because it is another reality that is counter to this world’s realities. God has a dream, but that dream is neither expressed nor achieved through satisfying every material whim of our first-world lifestyle. They are like frogs in the well who see the sky and think it is the world.
The Spirit is coming to sift our entire existence; He is coming to sift our systems and our values. He is the Baptiser in the Holy Spirit. He is coming to deconstruct all that we think is right and just and good, that we will see what we perceived was right and just and good, is not God’s truth but only chaff in the wind. It is because we are living in that day when men who are supposed to be good, are calling evil “good” and good, they are calling “evil.” He is coming to uproot every plant that His Father has not planted. And when He comes, not all will recognise His coming because they are calling good “evil.”
But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.”