Saturday, June 14, 2014

This and that about General Assembly

The worship service this morning, the 14th, was moving and biblical. Moderator Neal Presa proclaimed Jesus Christ as the answer to many variations of humanity including people of other faiths. The music and liturgy was excellent including “Alleluia, Sing to Jesus.
The interesting part for me was later in the day seeing one of the ladies, a teaching elder, who comments a lot on a Facebook page, called Happy to be a Presbyterian. I greeted her and when she asked me about the sermon I told her I really liked it. She then proceeded to say it meant all kinds of people with their various beliefs could be Presbyterians. And that is certainly true about Presbyterians, but not about the sermon.

I’m afraid I shocked her when I expressed the view that probably any belief is found acceptable in the PC (U.S.A.) but I believed that those Presbyterians who believed that Christ and Jesus are separate entities are not Christians. (Some on the Facebook site are prone to believe such teachings which reach back to gnostic tenets,)
How could you be a Christian and not believe that Jesus is the Christ? John the apostle had something to say about that, in fact, he called that an anti-Christ belief.

The Presbyterians for Middle East Peace had there breakfast this Saturday morning and the speakers were excellent. They were Ghaith Ai-Omari, a Palestinian, R. Gustav Niebuhr a professor and journalist and Rachel Lerner of J. Street.  I heard Lerner speak once before. She is a very concise speaker whose words are almost poetic. She stated that she had spoken at Presbyterian General Assemblies before and had not intended to speak again. She came because of the Israel/Palestine Mission Network’s very anti-Semitic booklet Zionism Unsettled. It troubled her enough that she felt she should come.
I will write more on the speakers if their speeches are published or are on video. So I will be looking for them.

Tonight Heath Rada, a southern ruling elder was elected Moderator. All three candidates are advocates for same gender marriage but Rada seemed to be more conciliatory toward everyone. The big problem was technology. In the end the voting had to be done by paper ballot.


Eleanor Duffield said...

The Jesus and Christ point reminds me of an assisted living resident who became Unitarian after marrying a Jewish man. She exclaimed, "Even an Atheist can become Unitarian!" Keep on reporting, please.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post Viola. I've been following the GA221 on twitter. The comments have been interesting. Missed you at church this morning! Amy

Viola Larson said...

Thanks Eleanor and Amy. I missed being there and all of you Amy.