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Get in the Ditch

I have come to the conclusion that the more things change; the more some things remain the same. In the days of the Bible, we have a familiar picture in which the elders, Sadducees and Pharisees sit for hours at the city gates debating and judging the motives and methods of those trying to heal and to help. To many of the finepoints of Scripture and doctrine were points to be debated and crosses upon which to crucify. Even Jesus was forced to spend far too many hours avoiding Gotcha and evasive questions. Today it seems like De-ja-vu all over again. Wait a minute; I think Ive heard that phrase before!

This weekend I watched in both anger and amazement over yet another atrocity and bully running amuck in Africa. The story of Joseph Kony who for the last 26 years, through his leadership in the LRA (Lords Resistance Army), has raped and murdered, kidnapped and tortured millions of people in Uganda. He has now moved on to the Congo. In watching the work of the organization Invisible Children*, I am amazed at the impact of a small band of brothers and sisters. They have spent the past 8 years devoting their lives to exposing the evil and demonic behaviors which has led to this genocide of a generation. Their media strategy is inspired. To date, over 75 million people and growing have viewed the video around the world just through the outlets of Youtube and Vimeo. In one week, this grew by almost 70 million views- talk about going viral! Also, in the last week, even some of the major media outlets of the world are finally waking up and telling the story. Maybe, just maybe, we could pray that the elders, Sadducees and Pharisees, the United Nations, Congress and more importantly our pulpits will preach again with fire and brimstone the Great Commandment andgreat responsibility taught by Jesus himself in Luke 10:25-37.

You remember from Sunday School how there was a man who was beaten, bloodied, stripped of everything and left half dead. Many were too preoccupied or simply unconcerned to lend a hand. What a picture of the Invisible Children of Uganda as well as the decimated country of Haiti and scores of other places on the planet. Im haunted by the words of Mother Teresa, If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.

Obviously I believe the Scripture is without error and doctrine matters. But, I believe my doctrine determines my duty and my belief determines my behavior. As a devoted and passionate follower of Jesus, I dont want to be sitting on the sidelines criticizing and holding up scorecards while others are in the arena covered in blood, sweat and dirt. I want to get in the ditch to help others get out, not only because theyre my brothers, but because thats where Jesus is.

*If you have not seen this 26-minute video, it is well worth the time. You can go to to watch it.

By Dr. Jay Strack

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