Monday, September 12, 2005

New wineskins and the table

Professing Professor John Mark Hicks reflects on Luke 5:27-39 and the implication of new wineskins in the church today:
New wineskins are not about praise teams, responsive readings, drama in the assembly or even new methods of “doing church.” It is not about the latest fad in order to be “new,” “current” or “relevant.” Rather, it is life transformation—a new way of relating to people, embracing “the other,” living in reconciling ways, dismantling the barriers that divide.

To use new wineskins or to put on a new garment is to act in ways that demonstrate the presence of the kingdom of God in the world. Jesus did it at table with sinners. We “do it’ in our own context.

We demonstrate it when we seek out friendships and show hospitality to the “others” in our culture—the poor, the homosexual, the Arab, the illegal alien, the disabled, etc. We demonstrate it when we sit at table with the “others” and invite them into the kingdom of God. But the invitation rings hollow when it is shouted at a distance, with a shrill voice filled with hatred and condemnation. It only rings true when we are at the table with them.


Blogger Kim said...

Thank you, Milton, for posting this. It just so happens that this addresses something that has been on my mind lately.

6:01 PM, September 12, 2005  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Glad to hear it, Kim.

7:20 PM, September 12, 2005  

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