The New Year traditionally provides an opportunity to look back and to look forward and to reflect on the lessons and possibilities of both directions. Traditionally (well, last year anyway) TheVirtualWord uses this post to highlight a more positive recent news story which reflects positively on the role of Christian faith.
We were therefore delighted to have our attention drawn to a piece by Matthew Parris from The Times a couple of days ago. In it, confirmed atheist Matthew Parris states that, “Missionaries, not aid money, are the solution to Africa’s biggest problem – the crushing passivity of the people’s mindset.”
He is arguing that the individualism of post-reformation Christianity is a much needed antidote to the problems caused by the “crushing tribal groupthink” that characterises the rural African mind.
Whilst we might see an over-emphasis on individualism in many protestant forms of Christianity as a distortion of the New Testament teaching on the inter-connectedness of all believers in Christ, it is wonderfully refreshing to see an atheist with the intellectual honesty to affirm the life-changing nature of the gospel, and to speak of its benefits. Congratulations Mr Parris!
We would like to wish you all a Happy New Year, and one in which you know more of the life-changing work of the Triune God.