søndag 15. mai 2016

The upper “crust” of a prophetic sandwich

A matter of urgency                                                       NORSK
Yesterday I shared the lower “crust” of a prophetic sandwich I believe God wants me to eat. The good thing about a sandwich is that it is actually impossible to tell if it is upside down. So there is no reason for calling one the lower and the other the upper. I have just done it to keep the separate – so here is:

Crust #2
I believe this to be the rediscovery of the prophetic DNA of the Salvation Army. Of course this has been part of our movement since our early days. William Booth used Isaiah 58 and defined the chapter to be The Salvation Army’s charter. The prophecy is a vivid expression of an integrated mission.

In November 1999 I attended a soldiers-meeting and listened to General Gowans’ articulation of our mission (1). The experience gave me a sense of listening to a prophetic confirmation of the charter.

I have never claimed, nor will I ever claim to have seen the full light, but I was only in my teens when I started to question the segregation of the ministry of our mission. All our ministries must be rooted in a local corps with ownership to the mission. If not, the vision of an integrated mission has a long way to go to become a reality.

“Salvation for both worlds” must not only be rooted in the “one message of deliverance” as Booth formulated it in 1889, but must be administered by people who actually have a focus on “both worlds” (2). In Booth’s time this was not an issue, because this was the reality, but through years of segregation and “specialization” we moved away from a fundamental principle.

The upper crust is the rediscovery of the Salvation Army’s DNA = the “coming together” of our mission as “one” – integrated in the way we organize us, but even more important: Integrated in the hearts of every follower of Christ.

‘Manna’ for today: 
See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks.
Hebrews 12:25
(1) The mission of TSA according to General Gowans:
  • Save Souls
  • Grow Saints
  • Serve Suffering Humanity
(2) “...as I came to look more closely into things, and gathered more experience of the ways of God to man, I discovered that the miseries from which I sought to save man in the next world were substantially the same as those from which I everywhere found him suffering in this, and that they proceeded from the same cause--that is, from his alienation from, and his rebellion against God, and then from his own disordered dispositions and appetites...But with this discovery there also came another, which has been growing and growing in clearness and intensity from that hour to this; which was that I had two gospels of deliverance to preach--one for each world, or rather, one gospel which applied alike to both. I saw that when the Bible said, ‘He that believeth shall be saved,’ it meant not only saved from the miseries of the future world, but from the miseries of this [world] also. That it came from the promise of salvation here and now; from hell and sin and vice and crime and idleness and extravagance, and consequently very largely from poverty and disease, and the majority of kindred woes.”

William Booth, “Salvation for Both Worlds,” in Boundless Salvation: The Shorter Writings of William Booth, ed. and comp. Andrew M. Eason and Roger J. Green (New York: Peter Lang, 2012), 53–54. 

This reflection on prophesy is linked to:
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.
Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
and they will prophesy.

Acts 2:17-18

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