Read Genesis 12:1-9.
I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed. Genesis 12:3
“You can be anything you want to be.” It is a little parental deceit that we indulge in to encourage our children to think about their future, and, hopefully, prepare themselves to be an adult one day. There is some truth to the idea. We live in a land where many people have a lot of opportunity. Even people who are born without money or other resources can use their wits and willingness to work to achieve a lot.
The idea that individuals can and should achieve all that they can has been a great improvement over the world in which people were locked into the paths that their parents and grandparents took. It has a lot of advantages.
The idea that the individual person is primary is also an important part of our Christian teaching. We rightly emphasize that each person must trust God for himself or herself. No one can do it for you, not even your parents. As they say, “God doesn’t have any grandchildren.”
But this emphasis on the personal nature of faith can cause us to forget that being a Christian, having faith in God, is also a community experience. When we trust in Jesus, we connect ourselves, not just metaphorically, but in spiritual reality with all of Jesus’ followers in every place and every time.
This was God’s plan all along, that all peoples and nations of people would be blessed through faith in Him. Abraham is the forefather of that relationship with God based on faith. And so, all peoples of the earth are blessed through him. And that means, we are related in faith to people from every nation and group. Syrians , Iranians, Mexicans, Palestinians, Kenyans and every kind of people are our brothers and sisters.
God is not making churches based on geographic countries or ethnic identities. We are all one in Christ. We should start loving each other based on His love.
Love in Christ,
Greg Burriss, Pastor
Rocky River Baptist Church
Siler City, NC