Culture > Q&A

Pioneering Palaus

"Pioneering Palaus" Continued...

Issue: "Day of reckoning," June 14, 2014

Kevin and Luis
Ben Brink/Genesis Photos
Kevin and Luis
Kevin, I’m sure folks have said that Christians should concentrate on strengthening Christian schools and homeschools. Yeah, but we’re simply saying, “The majority of the kids that we’re trying to reach and families we’re trying to reach are in public schools. That’s where the people are.” If we’re trying to demonstrate the love of Christ to people where they’re at, that’s an obvious place. 

When you see kids or families in desperate spiritual need, are you allowed to talk about Jesus? With our city leaders in Portland we’ve always been clear: We genuinely ask, “How can we serve?” No strings attached. At the same time we always say, “As evangelicals, our joy is to share the Good News, and we’re looking for chances to do that.” In public schools during school hours it’s not the time to hand out tracts and preach, but we build relationships and open doors. 

How do you communicate with homosexuals who are looking not just for toleration but for affirmation? We simply say, “Let’s find where we can work together for the good of the city.” We’ve had gatherings where the mayor brought members of the gay community, we brought evangelical pastors, and the mayor said, “This is not a meeting where we”—meaning the gay community—“try to convince the evangelicals to stand with us on gay marriage. That’s not going to happen. Let’s simply get to know one another, because we think it’s good for our community not to accuse each other of things without even knowing who we are.” In a sense it’s no different than with anyone who doesn’t know Jesus Christ. 

Luis, I take it that in meeting with anyone you say not, “you sinners” but “we sinners”? Yes, we all have a sin nature. On television shows interviewers would ask, “Do you think all Jews are going to hell?” And I would say, “I beg your pardon, why are you singling out the Jews. Are you anti-Semitic? No! We’re all sinners. I’m going to hell if I don’t repent. The Jews happen to be part of the human race. They also must repent.” All of us are sinners by birth because we inherited a sinful nature, therefore all of us need to repent. We’re all in the same boat, sinking unless a Savior saves us.

Marvin Olasky
Marvin Olasky

Marvin is editor in chief of WORLD News Group and the author of more than 20 books, including The Tragedy of American Compassion. Follow Marvin on Twitter @MarvinOlasky.

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