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【依法活現天國安】上帝的國與地上的國

 

RevJohnson我於 1985-1989 年事奉於菲律賓的馬尼拉聯合教會,時為他們的主任牧師。此教會於 1912 年成立,定意服侍日益增加的非菲人口。於我事奉初期,會眾中約 65% 為外國人仕,而菲律賓人則佔 35%。外藉會眾中,約三份之一為各國外交使節人員、三份一為跨國企業高層、另三份一為宣教工人。

我剛開始於這瑰奇的亞洲都市事奉便帶著極大的壓力。後推三年,當時總統馬可斯被指幕後指使謀殺其自美回國、剛完成一項心臓手術的政敵亞基諾,令他身亡於馬尼拉國際機場。從那時起,與亞基諾同一陣線的,無不感到馬可斯日趨白熱化的獨裁手腕,而期望能把國家轉向民主。及至 1985 年,局勢發展至臨界點,馬可斯的反對者被以各種方法及手段懲治。眼看着這個曾立於世界上自由民主的橋頭堡,今非昔比,我為此而心痛!

就在此時,長年在我心內萌芽的理念「福音影響政治」 終被確立。何解?說實在的,福音「是」什麼?馬可福音一開始,耶穌自己宣告福音的唯一定義便呼之欲出 -- 『耶穌來到加利利 ,宣講上帝的福音, 說:「日期滿了,上帝的國近了。你們要悔改,信福音!」』 依耶穌所言,福音乃由祂並藉祂讓上帝的國進迫臨格於世界。常被認為在末世才發生的事實卻應在現世中實現,更顛覆地說,上帝的新秩序其實已展開,並開始蔓延遍及世界。此新秩序為 -- 公正、慈悲、憐憫、真理、公義、聖潔、醫治的秩序,這一切已彰顯於耶穌道成肉身的在地生命。這把當時的政權放在準繩下 - 凡與上帝的國的秩序不乎的必於大君王前傾覆;因耶穌不斷的呼喚:「悔改」- 意即:警醒、轉身!為何?因有一新君王!

然而,我卻有兩重掙扎。一、馬尼拉大部份民眾都活於赤貧;他們貧窮,並不能脫貧,因富人在不斷無止境的斂財下變得富有、更富有、極富有,多個世紀以來,這已成了世界各地的通疾。二、最大的挑戰是要讓基督徒聽從耶穌、聽見福音,降服於祂、以祂為王,徹底以不一樣的顛覆性跟隨到底。祂呼召我們這些有財有勢的人當為貧乏人行使我們的財、我們的勢,特別是那些既得利益者,更應用其所有去分享天國的福音 - 寛恕、醫治、盼望、受壓的得自由。

耶穌的登山寶訓在我????頭「爆發」。於掙扎中,我終於聴到主的話 - 「不復仇、愛仇敵」。作為一個傳主道的外國人,我不住的宣講,當我們去服侍那些傷害我們的人,上帝的國便在我們當中臨格並展開,但我們必須不「回響」(我借用了印度宣教士斯坦利·瓊斯之詞)那些欺壓者和支配者之所行。

1985 年 11 月,馬可斯宣佈大選,而他的主要對手便是被殺參議員亞基諾的遺孀亞基諾夫人。不得了!1986 年 2 月,亞基諾夫人確實勝選,此令局勢更為緊張,因馬可斯無視選舉結果宣佈他順利當選。往後的二月中旬,軍中發生政變,成千上萬的民眾湧到軍政大樓前的道路,要求馬可斯宣佈其競選落敗。三天接近三百萬人充斥著軍政大樓附近的大街小巷,他們在作什麼?他們在祈禱!再祈禱!我舉目所見,眼所及的乃是一群一群人,擁在一起 -- 祈禱。無石頭、無汽油彈、無槍枝,只有祈禱的人,高呼 "Tapas Na" 「足夠」。三日後,馬可斯投降,投奔美國夏威夷。

對於此時此刻活於極權下的人,我希望你們好好地讀寫於極權統治下新約聖經。它的內容全是上帝的國如何進迫臨格於現實世界並把它轉化。兩個重點:一、拒絕各種暴力 - 暴力從來不能成就神的國,當暴力取替和平請願時便導致失敗。二、禱告 - 祈求大君王教導我們的禱文:「願祢的國降臨,在地如在天」。1986 年的革命稱為「人民力量革命」(The People Power Revolution),其實它更應被稱為「禱告人民力量革命」(The Praying-People Power Revolution)。噢,還有一點 - 傳福音,作耶穌首次差遣祂的門徒所作 - 「去,宣告 - 上帝的國近了!」看所要成就的事。

還有很多無盡之言,説之不畫盡!但以理書1-7章是一很好的研讀教材, 當然,啟示錄更是在極權壓制下作主門徒的代表之作。


註:作者為加拿大維真神學院客席教授。

 

 


 

 

Kingdom of God & kingdom of man
Rev Darrell Johnson

From 1985 to 1989 I served as the Senior Pastor of Union Church of Manila, the Philippines. The church was formed in 1912 to serve the then growing foreign population. By the time I arrived the congregation was roughly 65% ex-pat, 35% Filipino. The ex-pat portion was made up of roughly one-third international diplomatic corps personnel, one-third multi-national corporation leadership, one-third missionary servants.

When I began serving in that amazing Asian city, there was great tension. Three years before, the then President of the country, Ferdinand Marcos, was alleged to have had one of the opponents of his administration, Benito Aquino, murdered after he stepped out of the airplane on which he flew returning from the United States, where he had under-gone and recovered from major heart surgery. From that time on, those associated with Aquino, became more and more concerned about the growing dictatorial ways of Marcos, and were working to reign him into a more democratic way. By fall of 1985 the tensions were reaching a breaking point, those who spoke out against Marcos being punished in one way or another. I ached for the country. The Philippines was not long before seen as a beacon of democracy by the rest of the world.

It was there that I came to the conviction that had been growing in me for years that the Gospel affects politics. Why? Well, what IS the Gospel? The only definition that Jesus Himself even gave in found in the opening of the Gospel according to Mark. "Jesus came into Galilee announcing the Gospel of God, saying, 'The time is fulfilled, the Kingdom of God has come near. Repent, and believe the Gospel" (1:14-15). The Gospel according to Jesus is that in Him and because of Him God's Kingdom in breaking into the world. What was thought to only happen in the end of time was happening in the middle of time (so to speak). To put it provocatively, God's New World Order has come and in beginning to spread throughout the world. This New World Order is one of justice, mercy, compassion, truth, righteousness, holiness, healing. All of which we see being manifested in Jesus' earthly life. The powers-that-be were rightly concerned. For that which is not consistent with the Kingdom of God will collapse before the King. Hence Jesus' consistent call, "Repent." It means, "come to your senses and turn around." Why? Because there is a new King!

The struggle I faced was two -old. One, the majority of people in Manila were very poor. And they were poor because the rich were getting richer and richer and richer needing the poor to remain poor. It is the way it has been all over the world throughout the centuries. Two, the biggest struggle was helping Christians hear Jesus, hear His Gospel, surrender to Him as King, and follow Him in His radically different way. He calls those of us with wealth and power to use that wealth and power for the sake of the poor. Especially to use that wealth and privileged position to share the good news of the Kingdom – forgiveness, healing, hope, freedom from oppression.

During that time Jesus' Sermon on the Mount "exploded" in me. I finally heard what He is saying. As the tensions mounted Jesus' teaching on non-retaliation and love of enemy especially rose to the surface. As I preached His Sermon, needing to be careful as a foreigner, I kept emphasizing the fact that the Kingdom of God comes and advances as we seek to serve those who hurt us, as we choose not to simply "echo" (I got the word from E. Stanley Jones, missionary to India) the behavior of those who seek to dominate and oppress.

In November of 1985, Mr. Marcos called for a new election. His primary opponent was Cory Aquino, the widow of the murdered Senator Aquino. Oh my, the tensions increased! The election was held in February of 1986. She clearly won. But Mr. Marcos declared himself the victor. Then in mid February, there was revolt within the military, and millions of Filipinos flooded the freeway in front of the Military Headquarters, demanding that Mr. Marcos acknowledge that he had lost. For three days nearly three million people filled the streets near the Headquarters. What did they do? They prayed! And prayed! All over I could see people huddled in groups praying. There were no rocks, no cocktail bombs, no guns. Just praying people, saying, "Tapas Na," "Enough." At the end of the three days, Mr. Marcos gave in, and was flown by the US to Hawaii.

What do I say to those under totalitarian authorities? Read the New Testament. It was written under totalitarian rule. It is all about how the Kingdom of God breaks into the world and slowly changes it. Two major words. One, resist all forms of violence. Violence never brings about the Kingdom of God. it is when peaceful protests are allowed to be taken over by violence that they loose. Two, pray. Pray what the King taught us to pray – "Your Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven." The 1986 Revolution is called "The People Power Revolution." It should be called, "The Praying-People Power Revolution." Oh, and third word, evangelize. Do what Jesus told His disciples to do the first time He sent them on mission: "Go, say, 'The Kingdom of God has come near'." And watch what happens.

There is so much more to say! Daniel 1-7 would be a great text to study. And, of course, Revelation, written to disciples under very oppressive rule.


Note:Rev Darrell Johnson, Teaching Fellow, Regent College

 

喜樂 Joy

喜樂的心乃是良藥;憂傷的靈使骨枯乾。箴言 17:22
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Proverbs 17:22

然而,我要因耶和華歡欣,因救我的 神喜樂。哈巴谷書 3:18
yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. Habakkuk 3:18

要常常喜樂,不住的禱告,凡事謝恩。帖撒羅尼迦前書 5:16-17
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-17

饒恕 Forgiveness

主啊,你本為良善,樂意饒恕人,有豐盛的慈愛賜給凡求告你的人。詩篇 86:5
You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you. Psalm 86:5

你不要說:“我要以惡報惡”;要等候耶和華,他必拯救你。箴言 20:22
Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!” Wait for the LORD, and he will avenge you. Proverbs 6:14

你們饒恕人的過犯,你們的天父也必饒恕你們的過犯;馬太福音 6:14
For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. Matthew 6:14

你們不饒恕人的過犯,你們的天父也必不饒恕你們的過犯。馬太福音 6:15
But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:15

你們各人若不從心裡饒恕你的弟兄,我天父也要這樣待你們了。馬太福音 18:35
This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart. Matthew 18:35

謙卑 Humility

敬畏耶和華是智慧的訓誨;尊榮以前,必有謙卑。箴言 15:33
Wisdom’s instruction is to fear the LORD, and humility comes before honor. Proverbs 15:33

敬畏耶和華心存謙卑,就得富有、尊榮、生命為賞賜。箴言 22:4
Humility is the fear of the LORD; its wages are riches and honor and life. Proverbs 22:4

凡事不可結黨,不可貪圖虛浮的榮耀;只要存心謙卑,各人看別人比自己強。腓立比書 2:3
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. Philippians 2:3

但他賜更多的恩典,所以經上說:神阻擋驕傲的人,賜恩給謙卑的人。雅各書 4:6
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” James 4:6

驕傲 Pride

驕傲來,羞恥也來;謙遜人卻有智慧。箴言 11:2
When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom. Proverbs 11:2

驕傲只啟爭競;聽勸言的,卻有智慧。箴言 13:10
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. Proverbs 13:10

驕傲在敗壞以先;狂心在跌倒之前。箴言 16:18
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18

但他賜更多的恩典,所以經上說:神阻擋驕傲的人,賜恩給謙卑的人。雅各書 4:6
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” James 4:6

忍耐 Patience

愚妄人怒氣全發;智慧人忍氣含怒。箴言 29:11
Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end. Proverbs 29:11

並且你們要為我的名,被眾人恨惡,惟有忍耐到底的,必然得救。馬可福音 13:13
Everyone will hate you because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. Mark 13:13

不但如此,就是在患難中也是歡歡喜喜的。因為知道患難生忍耐。羅馬書 5:3
Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance. Romans 5:3

我們行善,不可喪志;若不灰心,到了時候就要收成加拉太書 6:9
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9

你們也當忍耐,堅固你們的心,因為主來的日子近了。雅各書 5:8
You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. James 5:8

溫柔 Meekness

回答柔和,使怒消退;言語暴戾,觸動怒氣。箴言 15:1
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

溫柔的人有福了,因為他們必承受地土。馬太福音 5:5
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Matthew 5:5

用溫柔勸戒那抵擋的人;或者 神給他們悔改的心,可以明白真道。提摩太後書 2:25
Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth. 2 Timothy 2:25

只要以裡面存著長久溫柔、安靜的心為妝飾;這在 神面前是極寶貴的。彼得前書 3:4
Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 1 Peter 3:4

嫉妒 Envy

不要為作惡的心懷不平,也不要向那行不義的生出嫉妒。詩篇 37:1
Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong. Psalm 37:1

心中安靜是肉體的生命;嫉妒是骨中的朽爛。箴言 14:30
A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. Proverbs 14:30

在何處有嫉妒、紛爭,就在何處有擾亂和各樣的壞事。雅各書 3:16
For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. James 3:16

生氣 Anger

當止住怒氣,離棄忿怒;不要心懷不平,以致作惡。詩篇 37:8
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. Psalm 37:8

好生氣的人,不可與他結交;暴怒的人,不可與他來往。箴言 22:24
Do not make friends with a hot-tempered person, do not associate with one easily angered. Proverbs 22:24

愚妄人怒氣全發;智慧人忍氣含怒。箴言 29:11
Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end. Proverbs 29:11

生氣卻不要犯罪.不可含怒到日落。以弗所書 4:26
In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. Ephesians 4:26

我親愛的弟兄們,這是你們所知道的,但你們各人要快快的聽,慢慢的說,慢慢的動怒,因為人的怒氣並不成就 神的義。雅各書 1:19,20
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. James 1:19,20

災難 Calamity

謹守口與舌的、就保守自己免受災難。箴言 21:23
Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity. Proverbs 21:23

民要攻打民、國要攻打國、多處必有地震、饑荒.這都是災難的起頭。馬可福音 13:8
Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places, and famines. These are the beginning of birth pains. Mark 13:8

憂愁 Worry

你們不要憂愁、因靠耶和華而得的喜樂是你們的力量。尼希米記 8:10
Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10

主雖使人憂愁, 還要照他諸般的慈愛發憐憫。耶利米哀歌 3:32
Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. Lamentations 3:32

凡勞苦擔重擔的人,可以到我這裡來,我就使你們得安息。馬太福音 11:28
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28

我留下平安給你們、我將我的平安賜給你們.我所賜的、不像世人所賜的.你們心裏不要憂愁、也不要膽怯。約翰福音 14:27
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

應當一無掛慮,只要凡事藉著禱告、祈求和感謝,將你們所要的告訴神。神所賜出人意外的平安,必在基督耶穌裡,保守你們的心懷意念。腓立比書 4:6,7
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6,7

因此, 你們是大有喜樂, 但如今, 在百般的試煉中暫時憂愁。彼得前書 1:6
In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 1 Peter 1:6

患難 Trouble, Suffering

義人多有苦難,但耶和華救他脫離這一切。詩篇 34:19
The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all. Psalm 34:19

神是我們的避難所,是我們的力量,是我們在患難中隨時的幫助!詩篇 46:1
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1

耶和華本為善,在患難的日子為人的保障,並且認得那些投靠他的人。那鴻書 1:7
The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him. Nahum 1:7

為義受逼迫的人有福了,因為天國是他們的。馬太福音 5:10
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:10

不但如此,就是在患難中,也是歡歡喜喜的。因為知道患難生忍耐。羅馬書 5:3
Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; Romans 5:3

我想現在的苦楚,若比將來要顯於我們的榮耀,就不足介意了。羅馬書 8:18
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8:18

因為你們蒙恩,不但得以信服基督,並要為他受苦。腓立比書 1:29
For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him. Philippians 1:29

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