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A Public Faith
Many Canadian Christians have adopted a 'privatized' faith. This is a reflection of Canadian cultural values, not biblical principles. The Christian faith is personal, but it is never private.
The Christian faith is public, not private. The creed of the early church was “Jesus is Lord” (cf. Phil 2:11). It is sometimes hard to appreciate, from our current historical vantage point, the significance of such a confession. It was not merely the expression of a sincerely held, but private, belief; it was a very public and subversive proclamation which brought about very public opposition. Despite what many assume today, the persecution of the early church was not merely owing to their belief in the forgiveness of sins, or the resurrection from the dead, or that God loved them. They suffered because, as they would publicly confess at baptism, Jesus Christ, God’s Son, is also “Lord” and has “ascended to the right hand of God the Father Almighty.” He has been given all authority (Matt 28:18) and has been made “head over all things” (Eph 1:22).
The obvious and controversial corollary to this is that, if Christ is Lord, Caesar is not. This very public fact, obscured by many today, was not overlooked by imperial powers at the time. The reality is, Christ has not simply carved out a private niche for Himself in some secluded corner of creation, nor has He been given authority over a small portion of our hearts. His resurrection was a public triumph over His enemies (cf. Col 2:15). He has ascended to the right hand of the Father, where He is currently ruling until His enemies are made a footstool (Psalm 110:1; 1 Cor 15:25), and He has dominion over the entire cosmos. In short, His resurrection reign is a direct challenge to all human authority that would vainly set itself against God (cf. Psalm 2).
A purely private faith in the publicly resurrected Son of God is a contradiction of terms, and a functional denial of the identity of Jesus Christ Himself.
That is not to deny, of course, the very personal nature of the gospel. Christ must be received by faith, personally. But the identity of King Jesus rules out a simply private faith. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ was a public event (cf. 1 Cor 15), and a public triumph (Col 2:15), akin to a victory parade for a Roman general. The implications of this cosmic victory extend to every corner of creation, including the public square.
The sad reality is that, in many ways, the Canadian church has been more influenced by the world than the Word of God. This has become increasingly evident in our inability to bring the reign of Christ to bear on all facets of human existence. Indeed, there is often an outright aversion to this approach. The artificial compartmentalization of ‘private’ and ‘public’ matters (with our faith only having rightful claim to the former) is a product of adopting Canadian cultural values over biblical principles. We face the same temptations as people in any other culture, with the syncretistic proclivity to adopt the values and assumptions of the surrounding, unbelieving culture. We must remain vigilant in our commitment to the renewal of our minds by the Word of God (cf. Rom 12:2).
The result of this unbelieving kind of thinking and acting is that the Canadian church is ill-equipped to fulfill her mission to make disciples of the nations, teaching them to obey all that Jesus has commanded (Matt 28:18-20). The privatized Jesus of the Canadian conscience is a counterfeit of the Christ of Scripture, and limits His commands (which we ought to teach) to that which remains, by and large, private.
For the church to be faithful, they must have a biblical vision of their resurrected King. They must have clarity on what He has accomplished through His life, death, resurrection and ascension. There must be no ambiguity regarding the marching orders that He has given us, and what faithful obedience now looks like.
The goal of the Dominion Dispatch and The Dominion Podcast is to bring clarity to these matters. We hope to encourage the church with a comprehensive, biblical vision of Christ and culture. Through a variety of media, we will seek to help Christians discern how to live under His gracious rule, and rule over creation in His name. This is both the blessing and duty of God’s people. It is our earnest hope and prayer that when the Son of Man returns, He will find faith on the earth.
 Apostles Creed