“Schaeffer Sunday” The Mark of the Christian by Francis Schaeffer Part 2

The Mark of the Christian by Francis Schaeffer Part 2

THE MARK OF A CHRISTIAN – CLASS 2 – Men & Brothers/A Delicate Balance

Published on Mar 15, 2012

The class was originally taught at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Overland Park, KS by Dan Guinn from FrancisSchaefferStudies.org as part of the adult Sunday School hour on Mar. 11th, 2012.

This class covers (section headings by Schaeffer) Section 2 – “Men & Brothers”  Section 3 – “A Delicate Balance”

_______________________________

I have several spiritual heroes in my life and Francis Schaeffer was one of those. In the film series “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?” the arguments are presented  against abortion (Episode 1),  infanticide (Episode 2),   euthenasia (Episode 3), and then there is a discussion of the Christian versus Humanist worldview concerning the issue of “the basis for human dignity” in Episode 4 and then in the last episode a close look at the truth claims of the Bible.
Christians should present the truth in love and that is what Francis Schaeffer’s book “The Mark of the Christian” is about. I have a portion of that book below:
Christians have not always presented a pretty picture to the world.
Loving our brothers and sisters
If Jesus had commanded so strongly that we love all people as our neighbors, then how important it is especially to love our fellow Christians.

If we are told to love all people as our neighbors then surely we can understand how overwhelmingly important it is that all men and women be able to see an observable love for those with whom we have these special ties.

The apostle Paul makes the double obligation clear in Galatians 6:10:

Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

He does not negate the command to do good to all people. But it is still not meaningless to add, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

This dual goal should be our Christian mentality, the set of our minds; we should be consciously thinking about it and what it means in our one-moment-at-a-time lives. It should be the attitude that governs our outward observable actions.

A delicate balance Very often the true Bible-believing Christian, in emphasizing two humanities –

one lost, one saved, one still standing in rebellion against God, the other having returned to God through Christ –

has given a picture of exclusiveness which is ugly.

There are two humanities. That is true.

Some men and women made in the image of God still stand in rebellion against him;

some, by the grace of God, have cast themselves upon God’s solution.

Nonetheless, there is in another very important sense only one humanity.

All men and women derive from one origin. By creation, all bear the image of God. In this sense, all people are of one flesh, one blood.

Hence, the exclusiveness of the two humanities is undergirded by the unity of all men and women. And Christians are not to love their believing brothers and sisters to the exclusion of their non-believing fellows. That is ugly. We are to have the example of the good Samaritan consciously in mind at all times.

The first commandment is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and mind. The second commandment bears the universal command to love people. Notice that the second commandment is not just to love Christians. It is far wider than this. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves.

First Thessalonians 3:12 carries the same double emphasis:

May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.

Here the order is reversed. First of all, we are to have love one toward another and then toward everyone else, but that does not change the double emphasis. Rather, it points up the delicate balance – a balance that is not in practice automatically maintained.

For true christians only If we look again at the command in John 13, we will notice some important things.

First of all, this is a command to have a special love to all true Christians, all born-again Christians.

From the scriptural viewpoint, not all who call themselves Christians are Christians, and that is especially true in our generation.

The meaning of the word Christian has been reduced to practically nothing. Surely, there is no word that has been so devalued unless it is the Word of God itself. Central to semantics is the idea that a word as a symbol has no meaning until content is put into it. This is quite correct. Because the word Christian as a symbol has been made to mean so little, it has come to mean everything and nothing.

Jesus, however, is talking about loving all true Christians. And this is a command that has two cutting edges, for it means that we must both distinguish true Christians from all pretenders and be sure that we leave no true Christians outside of our consideration.

But we must be careful of the opposite error.

We must include everyone who stands in the historic-biblical faith whether or not he or she is a member of our own party or our own group.

But even if a person is not among the true Christians, we still have the responsibility to love that one as our neighbor. So we cannot say,

“Now here’s somebody that, as far as I can tell, does not stand among the group of true Christians, and therefore I don’t have to think of him any more; I can just slough him off.”

Not at all. That one is covered by the second commandment.

The quality of our love
The second thing to notice in these verses in John 13 is the quality of the love that is to be our standard. We are to love all Christians

As I have loved you. [Jesus says]

The love he exhibited is to be our standard. We are to love all true Christians as Christ has loved us.

When we consider this, either of two things can happen:

We can just say, “I see! I see!” and we can make a little banner and write on it, “We Love All Christians!” and show it off when anyone looks at us.

How ugly.

Or we can find something exceedingly more profound – something that will take a great deal of time to cultivate; a great deal of thinking and praying about it.

The church is to be a loving church in a dying culture. How, then, is the dying culture going to consider us? Jesus says

by this shall all people know that you are my disciples, if you have love one to another.

In the midst of the world, in the midst of our present culture, Jesus is giving a right to the world. Upon his authority he gives the world the right to judge whether you and I are born-again Christians, on the basis of our observable love toward all Christians.

That’s pretty frightening. Jesus turns to the world and says, “I’ve something to say to you. On the basis of my authority, I give you a right: you may judge whether or not an individual is a Christian on the basis of the love they show to all true Christians.”

In other words, if people come up to us and cast in our teeth the judgment that we are not Christians because we have not shown love toward other Christians, we must understand that they are only exercising a prerogative which Jesus gave them.

And must must not get angry.

If people say, “You don’t love other Christians,” we must go home, get down on our knees, and ask God whether or not what they say is true. And if it is, then they have a right to have said it.

Dealing with failure in love We must be very careful at this point, however.

We may be true Christians, really born-again Christians, and yet fail in our love toward other Christians. As a matter of fact, to be completely realistic, it is stronger than this.

There will be times (and let us say it with tears), when we will fail in our love toward each other as Christians.

In a fallen world, where there is no such thing as perfection ( until Jesus comes), we know this will be the case.

And, of course, when we fail, we must ask God’s forgiveness.

But, Jesus is not here saying that our failure to love all Christians proves that we are not Christians. What Jesus is saying, however, is that, if I do not have the love I should have toward all other Christians, the world has the right to make the judgment that I am not a Christian.

This distinction is a vital one. If we fail in our love toward all Christians, we must not tear our heart out as though it were proof that we are lost. No one except Christ Himself has ever lived and not failed. If success in love toward our brothers in Christ were to be the standard of whether or not a man is a Christian, then there would be no Christians, because all men have failed. But Jesus gives the world a piece of litmus paper, a reasonable thermometer.

There is a mark which, if the world does not see, allows them to conclude, “This person is not a Christian.”

Of course, the world may be making a wrong judgment because if the man is truly a Christian, as far as the reality goes, they made a mistake.

The final apologetic
But there is something even more sober. And to understand it we must look at John 17:21, a verse out of the midst of Christ’s high priestly prayer. Jesus prays,

That all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

In this, his high priestly prayer, Jesus is praying for the oneness of the church, the oneness that should be found specifically among true Christians. Jesus is not praying for a humanistic, romantic oneness among people in general. Verse 9 makes this clear:

I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours.

Jesus here makes a very careful distinction between those who have cast themselves upon him in faith and those who still stand in rebellion. Hence, in the twenty-first verse, when he prays for oneness, the “they” he is referring to are the true Christians.

Notice, however, that verse 21 says, That all of them may be one… The emphasis, interestingly enough, is exactly the same as in John 13

not for a part of true Christians, but for all Christians

not that those in certain parties in the church should be one, but that all born-again Christians should be one.

Now comes the sobering part:
Jesus goes on in this twenty-first verse to say something that always causes me to cringe. If, as Christians, we do not cringe, it seems to me we are not very sensitive or very honest, because Jesus here gives us the final apologetic.

What is the final apologetic?

That all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

This is the final apologetic. [our ultimate defense]

In John 13 the point was that, if an individual Christian does not show love toward other true Christians, the world has a right to judge that he or she is not a Christian. Here Jesus is stating something else that is much more cutting, much more profound:

The Mark of the Christian by Francis Schaeffer © 1970 by L’Abri Fellowship. Used by permission of Norfolk Press, London. All rights reserved. No portion of this online edition of the book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, except for brief quotations for the purpose of review, comment, or scholarship, without written permission from the copyright holder.
Francis A. Schaeffer Institute of Church Leadership Development http://www.truespirituality.org/

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the video below. It is very valuable information for Christians to have.  Actually I have included a video below that includes comments from him on this subject.

Many liberals actually truly do argue for abortion rights over human rights. Prochoice advocate Elizabeth Williams came out and said that on 1-23-13 in her article on Salon. We hear reasons for abortion such as poverty,and  child abuse,  but why not consider adoption? Instead, the political left will stop at nothing to push the pro-abortion agenda. Why not stop and take an honest look at when life begins for the unborn child and when she begins to feel pain?

Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer Whatever Happened to the Human Race (Episode 1) ABORTION

_____________________________________

 

Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

Dr. Francis schaeffer – The flow of Materialism(from Part 4 of Whatever happened to human race?)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical flow of Truth & History (intro)

Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of History & Truth (1)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of Truth & History (part 2)

Related posts:

Francis Schaeffer’s prayer for us in USA

 Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 1) ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political views […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 10 “Final Choices” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 1 0   Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode X – Final Choices 27 min FINAL CHOICES I. Authoritarianism the Only Humanistic Social Option One man or an elite giving authoritative arbitrary absolutes. A. Society is sole absolute in absence of other absolutes. B. But society has to be […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 9 “The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 9 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IX – The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence 27 min T h e Age of Personal Peace and Afflunce I. By the Early 1960s People Were Bombarded From Every Side by Modern Man’s Humanistic Thought II. Modern Form of Humanistic Thought Leads […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 8 “The Age of Fragmentation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 8 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode VIII – The Age of Fragmentation 27 min I saw this film series in 1979 and it had a major impact on me. T h e Age of FRAGMENTATION I. Art As a Vehicle Of Modern Thought A. Impressionism (Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Sisley, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 7 “The Age of Non-Reason” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 7 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode VII – The Age of Non Reason I am thrilled to get this film series with you. I saw it first in 1979 and it had such a big impact on me. Today’s episode is where we see modern humanist man act […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 6 “The Scientific Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 6 How Should We Then Live 6#1 Uploaded by NoMirrorHDDHrorriMoN on Oct 3, 2011 How Should We Then Live? Episode 6 of 12 ________ I am sharing with you a film series that I saw in 1979. In this film Francis Schaeffer asserted that was a shift in […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 5 “The Revolutionary Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 5 How Should We Then Live? Episode 5: The Revolutionary Age I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Francis Schaeffer noted, “Reformation Did Not Bring Perfection. But gradually on basis of biblical teaching there […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 4 “The Reformation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IV – The Reformation 27 min I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer makes three key points concerning the Reformation: “1. Erasmian Christian humanism rejected by Farel. 2. Bible gives needed answers not only as to […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance”

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance” Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 3) THE RENAISSANCE I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer really shows why we have so […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 2 “The Middle Ages” (Schaeffer Sundays)

  Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 2) THE MIDDLE AGES I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer points out that during this time period unfortunately we have the “Church’s deviation from early church’s teaching in regard […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 1 “The Roman Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 1) THE ROMAN AGE   Today I am starting a series that really had a big impact on my life back in the 1970′s when I first saw it. There are ten parts and today is the first. Francis Schaeffer takes a look at Rome and why […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 5) TRUTH AND HISTORY

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 5) TRUTH AND HISTORY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices once […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY

The opening song at the beginning of this episode is very insightful. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 3) DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 3) DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” (Episode 2) SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” (Episode 2) SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 1) ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE

It is not possible to know where the pro-life evangelicals are coming from unless you look at the work of the person who inspired them the most. That person was Francis Schaeffer.  I do care about economic issues but the pro-life issue is the most important to me. Several years ago Adrian Rogers (past president of […]

The following essay explores the role that Francis Schaeffer played in the rise of the pro-life movement. It examines the place of How Should We Then Live?, Whatever Happened to the Human Race?, and A Christian Manifesto in that process.

This essay below is worth the read. Schaeffer, Francis – “Francis Schaeffer and the Pro-Life Movement” [How Should We Then Live?, Whatever Happened to the Human Race?, A Christian Manifesto] Editor note: <p> </p> [The following essay explores the role that Francis Schaeffer played in the rise of the pro-life movement.  It examines the place of […]

Who was Francis Schaeffer? by Udo Middelmann

Great article on Schaeffer. Who was Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer? By Francis Schaeffer The unique contribution of Dr. Francis Schaeffer on a whole generation was the ability to communicate the truth of historic Biblical Christianity in a way that combined intellectual integrity with practical, loving care. This grew out of his extensive understanding of the Bible […]

By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis Schaeffer | Edit | Comments (0)

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: