Chapter Plodding (No. 12): Cultural Prejudice and Being One in Christ
Before I give you some key takeaways for chapter 11 of Coekin's book, I'd like to refer you to an article of mine called "Who is My Neighbor" published by Dave and the good folks over at Servants of Grace because I think it pairs well with today's chapter.
In chapter 12, Coekin deals naturally with prejudice. This entire book is to be read alongside of the book of Jonah. If you're familiar with the book of Jonah you know that the reluctant evangelist has a particular worldview regarding who he believes God should and shouldn't forgive.
Dear Christ, the gospel is far reaching and it does not discriminate against folks of a certain nationality or a particular sin. And we should praise God for this, we are in fact the chief of sinners. In chapter 12, Coekin makes several statements worth noting;
Jonah 4 brutally exposes the prejudice of our hearts in the self-righteous vindictiveness of Jonah. (117)
God the Creator and Governor of all desires to save all nations. (117)
Cross-cultural evangelism is hard because it requires a love for unbelievers that will change our cultural prejudices. (116)
Christians [should] rejoice that in Christ, we are 'all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28)". (116)
We're not told if Jonah's disgust was primarily a self-righteous religious scorn for pagan idolaters, a racist hostility towards the violent enemies of Israel, or despair at how soft the Lord was proving to be. Most probably a toxic cocktail of all three. But he'd clearly forgotten the role of Israel as God's priesthood for introducing God to the nations (Exodus 19:5-6) and his own role as a prophet of God to proclaim God's word. Perhaps we too easily forget that we're saved from sin for God's evangelistic, church-planting and cross-cultural mission to all nations. (122)