The Francis Asbury Society

From the Director’s Desk – February 2013

With Easter approaching, I’ve been meditating on Paul’s promise for mutual participation in the resurrection: “he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies” (Romans 8:11).

Most of us think of resurrection in terms of immortality. Notice that Paul speaks just the opposite: he is not reflecting on resurrection to the “there and then,” but the here and now. He does it in much the same way as when he said, “I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live” (Galatians 2:20). So Paul speaks about the mortal body—the one that you now have. That is the one that the Spirit promises to quicken. The work is not post mortem.

Just Ask!

Visiting a member of our church in the hospital some years ago, I invited the family to form a circle around the bed so I could offer a pastoral prayer. Surgery was scheduled for the next day, and the outcome was in doubt. After prayer, a member of the family piously said, “Thanks, Pastor Stan. One thing we can be sure of is that whatever happens tomorrow, we know it is the will of God.” We shook hands and said goodbye.

As I walked to the parking lot, the words kept echoing in my mind: “Whatever happens is the will of God. Whatever happens is the will of God. Whatever happens is the will of God.” By the time I reached my car, I was in turmoil. Whatever happens is God’s will? What kind of theology is that? I was tempted to walk back to the hospital room and say, “I’m sorry. I didn’t realize that you folks were Muslims!”

Islam teaches that all that happens is Allah’s decree and, therefore, the essence of piety is to submit to his predetermined plan. The Gospel of Jesus Christ, however, introduces a radically new concept. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is not Fate. Though God is certainly sovereign over everything that happens and though he knows the end from the beginning, he is not the author of evil. Creating humans with the gift of free will, God has injected into human life a variable that leaves the future, at least to some degree, in our hands!

Meet Katie Diddle

This month, we’d like you all to meet Katie Diddle, our treasurer. Katie handles just about anything that has do to with numbers, for which the rest of the staff is very grateful. Donations, book orders, event registrations—any financial interaction you might have with FAS, chances are Katie’s taking care of it. But don’t let […]

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