January 8, 2014

Dispensationalism, Keller, and the poor [reprise]

by Jesse Johnson

Several years ago there was a steady push from the “missional church” encouraging other churches to use their material resources to advance God’s kingdom by meeting the physical needs of the poor. For the most part, that movement seems like it ran its course. Kevin DeYoung’s excellent book, “What is the Mission of the Church” probably deserves much of the credit for exposing and confronting the church’s mission creep. Nevertheless, I recently have received several questions about this topic, which makes me think that the misisonal approach to dealing with poverty might be trying to make a comeback. So both today and tomorrow I will rerun two posts from a few years ago that deal with this approach to poverty. The goal is to get the readers to think critically and carefully about what exactly the Scriptures say about the mission of the church as it relates to the poor of the world. These posts are from 2011:

I am becoming increasingly convinced that dispensationalists understand why social justice is outside the realm of the church, and that others—especially and ironically those in the missional movement—are rapidly losing sight of what the church’s mission is. When Tim Keller says, “It’s biblical that we owe the poor as much of our money as we can possibly give away,” Robin Hood ethics gradually eclipse the Great Commission mandate. Others may squirm, but it takes a real dispensationalist to say, “The Bible simply never commands the church to give anything to the poor of the world, other than the gospel.”

When Jesus said, “The poor you always have with you, but you will not always have me” (Matt 26:11Mark 14:7John 12:8), he raises a pressing question: What is the church’s role and responsibility when confronted with poverty? It is not debated that poverty has existed on earth since Cain’s banishment. What is debated is the reason for this, and then by implication the role the church has in ministering to the poor.

The Keller quote above came in an interview promoting his book Generous Justice, but it is not a new line for him. Way back in Ministries of Mercy, Keller said that the church has a mandate both personally and corporately to try and lower the poverty rates in our world, as well as a call to care for the homeless in our community (p. 21). He even defines mercy ministry as “meeting felt needs through deeds” and he describes sin as “producing alienation from God, self, others, and nature. This in turn produces theological, psychological, social, and physical needs, and the church must have as its goal the correcting of all of those needs.” (46-52). Even so, to say “It’s biblical that we owe the poor as much of our money as we can possibly give away” sort of ups the ante on this.

It probably goes without saying, but I radically disagree with Keller on this. I feel like a kid who says that the emperor has no clothes, but the fact of the matter is that nowhere does the Bible command the church to care for the material needs of the poor in the world, to lower the poverty rates in society, or to care for the homeless in our community. There are zero verses that command this, and several that even argue against it.

While some amils or historic premils may agree with this, it usually takes a dispensationalist to bluntly say that the NT does not command the church to participate in social justice endeavors. This is why dispensationalists are accused of being so pessimistic that they are of no earthly good. Thirty year ago Ryrie wrote: “Dispensational premillennialism is regularly accused of such pessimism as to make it useless in the realm of personal and social ethics. In personal ethics it is commonly characterized as negative; in social ethics as impotent.”

I am fine with being labeled a pessimist, because I strongly believe that the NT does not command Christians to engage in what is mislabeled social justice. Even Keller himself tacitly grants that there are no NT commands to the church for these activities (apart from the story of the good Samaritan, which I discuss here). The fact is, the church should be using her resources to further her one mission in the world, and that mission is reaching the lost with the gospel.

There are substantial distinctions between dispensational and non-dispensational views concerning the church’s responsibility to the poor and the role of mercy ministry in the local church. The dispensationalist understands that the commands given to Israel concerning the poor do not apply to the church. The dispensationalist understands that the way God’s testimony was manifest to the earth through a theocracy is different than how the gospel goes forward through the church, and this change affects social ethics. The dispensationalist understands that there are eschatological implications in how the church pursues mercy ministry, and that eradicating poverty is not a means of kingdom advancement.

While certainly some amillennialists would agree with some of the preceding paragraph, these are generally pretty easy statements for the dispensationalist. These observations, although obvious to me, are often overlooked by non-dispensationalists. John Feinberg explains that non-dispensationalists tend to focus on “the soteriological and spiritual elements” of the Old Covenant, leavingClick for image dispensationalists to emphasize the “social, economic, and political” structure of OT Israel. He went on to write that because the nature of the Torah’s commands concerning the poor are so different than what the NT commands, that to discuss them at all lends itself to seeing discontinuity between the two covenants, and thus dispensationalism. Ryrie agrees, adding that distinctions between the OT and NT concerning mercy ministry can only be understood in light of dispensations.

There is a very real danger that has been played out through history repeatedly, that when churches embrace a vision for combating poverty, evangelism is one of the first victims of this altered commission. In no way am I implying Keller has sacrificed evangelism, but I am making the observation that when money is going to soup kitchens, it is not going to missions. To guard against that, the church is never commanded to give material goods to the poor as a means for expanding the kingdom. Simply put, you owe the poor the gospel; Jesus died to purchase for them the privilege of hearing the testimony of his death and resurrection (1 Tim 2:6). That is both the most and the least you can give, and Robin Hood ethics do not overlap with the Great Commission.

Jesse Johnson

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Jesse is the Teaching Pastor at Immanuel Bible Church in Springfield, VA.
  • Jerry Wragg

    Excellent instruction, Jesse!

    • Ray Adams

      Agreed! Very helpful expression of significant focus for the church. My love for Christ and appreciation for the power of the gospel to accomplish the true mission of the church as commissioned by Jesus is strengthened without removing any sense of my need to help those in need whom God providentially brings across my path.

  • Joe Sobran

    Not sure you have actually dealt with Keller’s exegesis. He does a lot of Bible exposition to come to his conclusions, and you don’t interact with any of it. To say that he admits there are no NT commands for the church to do this apart from the Good Samaritan parable simply isn’t true.

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      He says that in the book “Ministers of Mercy.”

      • Joe Sobran

        Chapter 3 of the book Generous Justice is all about NT teaching on care for the poor besides the Good Samaritan parable. Jesus condemns the Pharisees for not caring for the poor, adopting the OT prophets use of lack of love for the poor as a sign of false religion. Jesus’ parables about inviting in the poor, the lame, etc lead John Newton to say “If these words do not teach us that it is in some respects our duty to give a preference to the poor, I am at a loss to understand them.” It shows that Luke uses Deut 15′s direction that every seven years the poor should be forgiven debts as the background to Acts 4. It talks about Paul’s reasoning for taking offerings for the poor. That’s just a start. You shouldn’t give the impression that he doesn’t use a couple of dozen New Testament texts to make his case. You may disagree with the exegesis on all of them, but you shouldn’t speak as if he didn’t even try to make the case. That’s the impression you give.

        • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

          Thanks Joe. In Ministers of Mercy, he does make the point that the imperatives of his practice come from the Torah, and that the example comes from the Good Samaritan (hence the subtitle of the book, The Call of the Jericho Road).

          But as for Generous Justice, much of what he says can fall into two categories: rebuking the pharisees for not keeping the intent of the Torah (which is different than saying the church is under the Torah), and the commands in the NT to drive out poverty from the church, which I completely embrace. So when Paul takes a collection for the saints in Jerusalem, or when James rebukes those who see their brother/sister in physical need, or when John says if you see your brother in need and turn the other way you are a liar about your faith, or when Jesus says that whoever refuses to minister to the least of his brothers/sisters, I am in complete agreement with those statements. Ditto with his comments on Acts 4! The difference is I see that as applying w/in the church, Keller sees that as applying to non-believers. Does that help? Sorry I wasn’t clear above.

          • Joe Sobran

            One more try on this. Page 144 Keller says that the church should not do everything as an institution that it disciples its people to do out in the world. On page 146 he says that “churches that try to take on all the levels of doing justice often find that the work of community renewal and social justice overwhelms the work of preaching, teaching, and nurturing the congregation.” He agrees evangelism and discipleship is the primary thing for the church to do–not care for the poor. But then he then says that the only way to take seriously that God identifies himself as being for the widow, orphan, and immigrant is that the church should equip and disciple individual Christians to be very charitable and known for their concern for the poor. These are the balances he sets out. He is pretty careful to make a distinction between what the church is called to do and what Christians are equipped and taught to do in the world.

            Now you are right–and I think Keller agrees–that the church must not see itself as a institution working for social justice in the world. That is not its calling. But for you to say that Christians shouldn’t work for justice doesn’t make sense in terms of even the golden rule.

  • Andrew

    I’m newer to this blog, so thank you for reposting. But to clarify: a “Robin Hood” ethic carries connotations of justified robbery of the rich, which Keller would obviously not support…so a different analogy is needed here. Also, do dispensationlists not take 1 Cor 10:11 seriously? A plain reading of that verse would say that all those OT commands about caring for the poor are saying something to *us* today. Finally, it would lend credibility to this post if you added a paragraph or two summarizing how Keller sees serving the poor as a necessary entailment of gospel ministry – in other words, why does he not see serving the poor and gospel ministry in strong opposition, as you do?

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Good point on the Robin Hood ethics. I don’t mean to imply the means (obviously Keller would be against theft), but the mandate of “owing” the poor.
      The question you ask about serving vs. evangelism is an excelent distinction. Keller (in Ministers of Mercy) grants that people aren’t saying “Only Sandwich” or “Only gospel.” But he lays out that it is WRONG to use the Sandwich as a means to the gospel, and insists that the sandwich can be an end in and of itself, as an expression of kingdom work. That’s probably the most succinctly I can express the difference.

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Here is another post I wrote (I hate typing that line, btw) that gives a basic summary of the distinction–complete with graphics!

      http://thecripplegate.com/discontinuity-the-poor-israel-and-the-church/

      • Andrew

        Thx for the thoughtful interaction, Jesse.

  • Hope

    Thanks, Jesse! This is a bit off the subject, but…could you point me to some resources outlining the differences between dispensational and non-dispensational theology? My husband and I were talking about it last night, and we have some confusion about it and it’s been hard to find a trustworthy and concise resource outlining both views. Possibly a project for Cripplegate? ;) Or maybe it’s been done and I just can’t find it…

    • Ray Adams

      I would second the request for some distinction between dispensational and non-dispensational theology, or, at least sharing a helpful resource. Actually, a simple review of basic presuppositions would likely be sufficient. But a post might not interest the larger discussion.

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Here is the closest thing on our blog to that–it is a book review: http://thecripplegate.com/understanding-dispensationalism/

      But there is certainly a need for a one post tutorial on the topic. Look for that here in the next few weeks.

      • Hope

        Thanks, Jesse!

  • Paul Luedke

    Very helpful Jesse. Appreciated the timely link to the Good Samaritan article as well.

  • Dan Phillips

    Hear, hear.

    The PCA church I dearly loved (and joined) studied through Keller’s book. Painful, unhappy experience. I felt like we were reading a DNC press release writ large. Ugly.

    Source the Feinberg quotation?

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      “Systems of Discontinuity,” 85.

  • http://almostreadytogoamish.blogspot.com/ Johnny

    And the rich people of the church all breathe a collective sigh….

    “Phew, we can keep the bimmer, Buffy…”

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Wait till tomorrow for your BMW post Johnny.

      • http://almostreadytogoamish.blogspot.com/ Johnny

        In all seriousness, what I need help with working out is situations such as the example from the last church I attended, with the visibly-wealthy dude, always dressed the the nines, expensive car, lived in a mansion, immaculately-trimmed hair and goatee, owned a helicopter, etc. You know, I understand that it’s the ‘love’ of money that’s wrong, and he would argue he didn’t love money…. but man, his life seemed to show differently…

        I’ve got specks a’plenty in my own eyes I know, and I’m sure I have more in my pantry than most folks do in third world countries, but something about that sort of situation with the Thurston Howell III lifestyle in the church just never seemed kosher to me. Hopefully you will address.

        Thanks Jesse

  • Henry

    May I just ask… Who then is your neighbor??

    And if God had a hard-hearted & unloving disposition toward his enemies (Rom 5:8) and those outside the Church – who could be saved??

    Do the Beatitudes have any meaning in the life & heart of a ‘dispensationalist”?

    I am horrified at this public display of self justifying Pharisarism…. straining at gnats…

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      “Who then is your neighbor” is a good question–but Marvin Olasky points out a more important question is “what is the most loving thing to do?” for that neighbor. Giving him your money?

  • Scott

    So Paul wasn’t asked to remember the poor? The Church did not care for the widows and orphans from square one? Paul did not organize a collection for the poor in Jerusalem? We are not commanded to do everything in love? The only way I can make sense of your post is to assume you have never been to a country where people are at this moment starving to death. I’m sure the Church should just go to those places and disregard their abject poverty and just offer them theological teaching emptied of all love and compassion.

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Good questions Scott. The difference is between meeting the physical needs of Christians (which we are commanded to do) and meeting thy physical needs of those outside the church–which we are not commanded to do, and in many cases is explicitly outside of the church’s mission.
      So one at a time here: Paul remembered the poor (and was eager to do so) by collecting money for the “saints” in Jerusalem. The church has always cared for her widows, but those are the widows in the chruch, and in fact Paul expressly says that the care should go ONLY to widows who “are well known for their good works and for washing the feet of the saints”). And, to draw in Marvin Olasky again–the issue isn’t ARE we supposed to love, but WHAT is the most loving thing we can do for others.
      Obviously the church does not disregard poverty, but the solution to it is not w/in the church’s means. What we have is the gospel, and when churches are established, then those who are in it have their physical needs met by the Christians of the world–something that is often lacking now b/c Christians in the world are consumed with social justice of the masses rather than the material needs of those in the church…but I digress.

      • 4Commencefiring4

        What there is “no command” for the church to do regarding the poor is to endeavor to solve the problem of poverty, as it’s impossible. But to therefore infer that the church is not to make it a priority to minister to the poor’s physical needs is an acute mistake. Those in Matt 25 who are hungry, thirsty, ill, naked, and in prison are not just fellow believers. They are people–not further defined, unless you wish to take “these my brethren” as meaning just christians. And if we’re going to do that, then His command to “love one another” also means to love just christians. I don’t think that would get any votes.

  • Brad

    So Jesus’ ministering to the poor’s physical needs as a means to prepare their hearts for the Gospel isn’t biblical justification for ending poverty?

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      I hope not, b/c Jesus says “the poor you will always have with you”!
      Can you give me an example of Jesus ministering to the physical needs of specifically the poor? I know he feeds the masses, and he heals the sick (both rich and poor). What specifically are you thinking of?

  • Doug

    Excellent. There are many who do not grasp the distinctions of this as you so clearly introduced in your 7th paragraph. I am not as familiar with Tim Keller, but what you said of him is very close to what I’ve seen Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert mention in their book “When Helping Hurts – How to alleviate poverty without hurting the poor…and yourself”. I disagree with the premise of the book, but there are a few helpful things in it.

  • brad

    Jesse,

    I am thinking through your article. There is a lot to think about! I have a hard time understanding the theory of something unless I can see what it means in real life. Could you list a few practical/tangible applications of your view? Also, could you list a few ways Keller’s view has caused his church to do things wrong?

    Thanks!
    Brad

    • Ken Mitchell

      I am and have always been a dispensationalist, a grad of Dallas Theological Seminary, and wrote my ThD dissertation on “The Teaching of the Bible Concerning the Poor.” It seems to me that what we learn from the OT that is valid for God’s people today is the character of God, and the righteous character that God desires in His people. God definitely cares about the poor, as is evidenced by the numerous commands regarding the just and generous treatment of the poor. And God also commends as righteousness among HIs people the just and generous treatment of the poor. As an example of this, look at Job’s defense of his own personal righteousness. What does he present in his argument that he has been a righteous man? In Job 29 it was his concern and care for the poor. I think this character of God and this aspect of righteous character among His people is clearly carried over into the NT. This does not take away from the great commission of the church. I think it is just part of the character of God and the kind of people we are to be as followers of Jesus. We are people who proclaim the Gospel and that there is salvation alone in Jesus Christ, and people that care for the hurting of this world. Some ministries may focus more on evangelism, and others on care. But they should never be divorced.

  • David C

    What is your interpretation of the injunctions in James 1 & 2 regarding caring for the orphans, widows, and not showing partiality to the rich man (and by corollary disregarding the poor man)? Are you saying that these verses are only applied to rich and poor within the church and not applicable to those in poverty outside of it?

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      2 fold: first, the command to remember widows should be seen through the lens of Acts 6 and 1 Tim 5, where it is obviously the widows in the church. In fact, Paul expressly FORBIDS giving financial aide to widows unless they have a reputation for faithfulness in the church. Second, the command about seeing your brother/sister in need and turning away is actually more powerful when you realize that James is talking about another believer–it is someone you recognize, your own brother/sister in the Lord, and rather than meeting his immediate needs of clothes and food, you simply say “see you in worship–press on brother” is outrageous and obviously reminiscent of what John says in 1 John 3:17: “If anyone has this world’s goods and sees his brother in need but shuts off his compassion from him– how can God’s love reside in him?”
      Those are oceans apart from seeing it as the church’s job to eliminate poverty and usher in social justice in the world.

  • Harry

    NT commands for churches is always towards poor church people not the unsaved. What has confused Christians are para-church organization, Christian Charities etc often incorrectly use in their mission statement bible verses regarding the poor

  • 4Commencefiring4

    As someone who has, since 1970 when I was saved, been to retreats, seminars, weekends, “men’s conferences” and such, and spent enough time taking in INFORMATION and filling notebooks with scribble until the world looks level, and having only recently become involved in actually stooping to help someone directly by participating in a ministry to the homeless, I can say I’m finally noticing a strong tendency in many Bible churches to always be “learning doctrine” to the near exclusion of doing what Christ spoke of in Matt 25: “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these, ye have done it unto me.” The “it” He was referring to was not attending yet another “Iron Sharpens Iron” weekend; I think we all KNOW quite enough by now. No, it’s getting out of your comfort zone and meeting a real need in a real person’s life.

    The very idea that those who name the name of Christ should not have a demonstrable concern for, and be willing to act to assist, the poor I find to be blindness upon blindness. You say there’s no “command” to give of yourself to the poor? Strictly speaking, it’s not “commanded.” But James tells us it’s not enough to say to those in need, “Go forth with God; be warm and filled…”, while we drive off in our heated cars knowing we could have helped and didn’t. We “tsk-tsk” at the man on the street, but never consider how little in our own lives would have to be different in order for US to be the one homeless. It happens to more than just the drunk or dope head. Lose your job and/or your insurance and see how long it would take before you found yourself out on the street.

    How would any of us feel if WE were homeless and desperate for a next meal, or relegated to living in a tent in 20 degree weather, and everyone we crossed paths with only showed as much compassion as we’re accustomed to showing to them now? How would you like the world to be only as concerned for your welfare as you and I are for theirs? Scary, huh?

    In Matt 25, our concern for those less blessed than us is what Jesus said “the King” would be calling into review on Judgment Day. Those who went into eternal life were not those who could distinguish between the present perfect tense and the past tense in Greek, or who could discuss positional truth vs works, but those who clothed the naked and fed the hungry. That may not qualify as a “command” in your book, but for me it’ll do as a command until He comes.

    What does the world hate about the church more than anything? Same thing Jesus spent so much time condemning: hypocrisy. The hungry man, the cold man, the imprisoned man benefits nothing from a church that tells him he just needs to pull himself up and get right with God, or who promises blessing to the one who will send a “faith gift” of $1,000 to the Rolex-wearing preacher’s ministry. These are the ones God is going to judge, along with those who never even pretended to know Him.

    No, there’s nothing more important than preaching the Gospel to anyone, poor or rich. But a man whose stomach is aching from hunger, or who is freezing in the night, especially when he sees you’re not suffering any, isn’t apt to listen to a message of salvation until those needs are met first. We’re never going remedy poverty, but we can keep one man from freezing or starving tonight, can’t we? In a country as rich as ours, and with churches with $40,000 BMWs in the parking lot, I think it’s a crying shame we can’t find some way–some way–to buy a pair of warm socks for a man with wet feet.

    It’s not “social gospel.” It’s doing something “unto Him.”

  • John Kr

    To say the church’s ultimate mission is not social justice is commendable. To make little of caring for the unsaved poor by arguing that the NT does not command help for the non-Christian poor is overreach. It is debatable, and if there is really this question, then its better to err in giving to much than to err in not giving enough (or not at all). As far as commands, Jesus commanded the rich young ruler to sell all he had and give it to the poor. In Galatians 2, Paul was asked by the apostles to remember the poor. Neither make any distinction between saved or unsaved poor. To make a big deal about the latter not being a “command”, well, Paul does say “Be imitators of me, as I imitate Christ.” So then it is a command to be eager to help the poor, as Paul was, if we are to imitate him, and the burden of proof has to be on those arguing that this refers only to Christian poor. As for examples, was the man in Acts 3 a Christian when he asked Peter for money? The text does not say. Peter healed him, and while this definitely has a missionary purpose, this can’t be separated from mercy ministry. Also, when Paul was shipwrecked on Malta, Publius;s father was healed and other people on the island were also healed. Is this not mercy ministry as an example that per Paul’s command, we should imitate (in a non-Charismatic way, I would say), is this not mercy ministry, and is there any indication that Paul limited it to converts? The text, once again, does not say, and I would have to say that it seems logical to say at least that some non-Christians were healed. This is mercy ministry outside of the church that we should imitate in imitation of Paul and Jesus.

  • John Kr

    To say the church’s ultimate mission is not social justice is commendable. To make little of caring for the unsaved poor by arguing that the NT does not command help for the non-Christian poor is overreach. It is debatable, and if there is really this question, then its better to err in giving to much than to err in not giving enough (or not at all). As far as commands, Jesus commanded the rich young ruler to sell all he had and give it to the poor. In Galatians 2, Paul was asked by the apostles to remember the poor. Neither make any distinction between saved or unsaved poor. To make a big deal about the latter not being a “command”, well, Paul does say “Be imitators of me, as I imitate Christ.” So then it is a command to be eager to help the poor, as Paul was, if we are to imitate him, and the burden of proof has to be on those arguing that this refers only to Christian poor. As for examples, was the man in Acts 3 a Christian when he asked Peter for money? The text does not say. Peter healed him, and while this definitely has a missionary purpose, this can’t be separated from mercy ministry. Also, when Paul was shipwrecked on Malta, Publius;s father was healed and other people on the island were also healed. Is this not mercy ministry as an example that per Paul’s command, we should imitate (in a non-Charismatic way, I would say), is this not mercy ministry, and is there any indication that Paul limited it to converts? The text, once again, does not say, and I would have to say that it seems logical to say at least that some non-Christians were healed. This is mercy ministry outside of the church that we should imitate in imitation of Paul and Jesus.

    • John Kr

      “Too much”, not “to much”, excuse me.

    • John Kr

      I completely forgot about Matthew 5:42, where Jesus said,”Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.” No qualifiers “except for the poor”, or “except for non-Christians” or “except for Gentiles”. In light of this, I don’t see how the statement above (“The Bible simply never commands the church to give anything to the poor of the world, other than the gospel”) can stand up.

      • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

        So I’m trying to make a distinction that perhaps I could have made more clearly, but a distinction between individual ethics and the mission/obligation of the church. I’m saying it is wrong to view social change as the mission of the church. I get that as the church scatters, individual Christians are stewards of their resources/opportunities, and need to honor the Lord in all they do. Check out this post which I hope sheds more light on that distinction: http://thecripplegate.com/are-all-biblical-commands-corporate/

    • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

      Thanks for your great comment John, and I appreciate the balance you strike in the opening line. Please see my response below and the point there, because it applies to much of what you say here. Let me add this though, b/c I’m glad you brought up Acts 3. In the very end of Acts 2, the church members pooled all their money and left it in the control of the apostles. The very next verse is a beggar (from outside the church) asking for money, and Peter tells him “no.” It stretches credulity for me to think “that’s because every dollar from Acts 2:45 had been spent immediately (after all, the beggar appears on the same day (!) that the church had pooled their money). Instead of giving him the church’s money, they gave him something better for sure, and if the man was converted, obviously from that point on he was no longer a beggar, as the church would have met his needs.

  • Joe Rhoads

    In fact, all, absolutely all, the commands given to the church in the NT regarding helping economically are those in the church and/or family. Remember the old praise song, “They will know we are Christians by our love,” well, the bible actually says, (Jesus speaking), “They will know you are My disciples by your love for one another.”

  • http://thecripplegate.com Jesse Johnson

    With that, I”m going to close this thread and direct the conversation over to today’s post where I answer some of the questions from here as well:

    http://thecripplegate.com/biblical-pillars-for-mercy-ministry-reprise/

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