We are in the midst of a revolution, and the black brothers on the street are not playing when they say that unless they get justice they will burn the system. Now the question is, Where does the Church stand in the midst of that revolution? What is the message of evangelism? What is the message of the Church? What do we have to say to 25 million people who feel shut out of American society?

Let’s begin by considering what the role of the Church is. First, in this hour of revolution it is the role of the Church to reflect the life of Jesus.

The New Testament Church also grew up in a time of revolution. It grew up in a time when the Romans were exploiting the Jews, and when the seeds of revolution were being sown by Jewish nationals who were saying that there was only one way to get that Roman honky off your back and that was to burn him out. In the midst of this there arose this radical group of disciples who had been with Jesus for 3 ½ years, who had walked with him and seen him live his life in total dependency upon his Father, had seen him crucified, resurrected, and ascended to his Father. Filled with his life they went out and impressed people that they had been with Jesus.

My black brothers in Harlem and Watts are not so sure that the Church in the twentieth century has been with Jesus. They’re not convinced that we present Jesus Christ or that we are the vehicles through which he has chosen to reflect himself.

But it is the purpose of God in this hour of revolution to take you and me as the Church and make us the vehicles through which he expresses himself. It is therefore the responsibility of the Church to be able to say to a revolution that we’re not here necessarily to take sides; we’re ...

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