Man, Woman & Child Find True Family at the Cross
I am in Moldova, speaking today at the 12th World Congress of Families.
Today we are flooded by anti-family messages in the mass media and social media. How do we rise above this flood? While it is important to resist falsehood, expose it, refute it, and not give in to it, it is also imperative to prioritize the positive message of the family. We must rise above the negative messages so prevalent in the modern technological world today. How can we do this?
The way to rise above such messages is by paying closer attention to higher media, to Divine messages. By what media are Divine messages given?
First, Creation and Nature. In Psalm 19:
The heavens are telling the glory of God;
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours forth speech,
and night to night declares knowledge.
Similarly, St. Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome:
Ever since the creation of the world God's eternal power and divine nature, invisible though they are, have been understood and seen through the things he has made. (1:20)
So, the media here are creation and nature, and the message is God's glory, power, and divine nature. Scientific evidence is confirming that the universe is exquisitely designed for mankind. It is our home, created for us, not just a chance "evolution."
Second, Holy Scripture, including the Psalms, Prophets, Law, the Ten Commandments constitute Divine Media:
Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, . . . (Heb. 1:1)
Third, there is a "New Media," where God has spoken most clearly of all in a brand new way:
. . . but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, (Heb. 1:1)
Christ is the New Mediator that conveys Divine Truth. For:
For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. (1Tim. 2:5)
Mediator here does not simply mean Jesus passes on messages between God and men, nor does he simply speak to God on our behalf. (Moses could and did do that.) He is in his very person the bridge between God and man. with one end on the divine side of the chasm, the other end on the human side. He is both God and man, therefore bringing God to man and man to God. He does this supremely on the Cross.
St. Irenaeus writes, "For the glory of God is a living man; and the life of man consists in beholding God. For if the manifestation of God which is made by means of the creation, affords life to all living in the earth, much more does that revelation of the Father which comes through the Word [Christ], give life to those who see God." This "living man" is Christ. The way he lived—and died—and rose—is a revelation of the Glory of God.
Human beings who have within them the life of Christ also reflect the glory of God. The messenger can be the media, as St. Paul wrote:
You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all; and you show that you are a letter of Christ, prepared by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. (2 Cor. 3:2)
The truth is carried by more than words. It is carried by the way we and our families live. For the truth of Christ, the gospel of God, is an invitation to holiness, repentance from sin, faith in the love and mercy of God, and a life that expresses forgiveness, compassion, tender-heartedness, kindness, love, joy and peace.
As Russell Moore writes in his new book on the Storm-Tossed Family: How the Cross Reshapes the Home, the Cross serves as the bridge, the mediator, between Genesis 3 and the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. The Christian family is called to Cross-centered lives, which is to say, Christ-centered, full of grace and truth. It is the narrow way, where we find rest for our souls.
Yours for Christ, Creed & Culture,
James M. Kushiner
Executive Director, The Fellowship of St. James
James M. Kushiner is Executive Editor of Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity, and Executive Director of The Fellowship of St. James.