the Libyans, Stevens was functionally President Obama. An ambassador carries the
authority of the one he represents. With this authority, Ambassador Stevens
managed to transform the civil war-torn country. “It’s especially tragic that
Chris Stevens died in Benghazi, because it is a city that he helped to save,”
Obama declared of the fallen US hero.
Obama went on to say, "There is absolutely no justification for this type of
senseless violence," and has vowed to seek justice on the perpetrators.
you mess with an ambassador, you better be prepared for the wrath of his higher
up. Wars have started because an ambassador was mistreated. That’s why no one
has expressed much surprise at the
Pentagon’s decision to deploy two warships to the coast of
Libya. While the White House has, rightfully, been careful not to blame Libya or
Islam for these actions, it is too early to tell what sort of “wrath” will
befall on those who pulled the trigger.
the meantime, I mourn with the families of the four people who lost their lives
story grabbed my attention because I find myself fascinated with the
relationship between ambassadors and their homeland, as well as their
relationship with the land they occupy.
his second letter to the Corinthians, Paul instructs us to relate to God and to
the city around us like Ambassador Stevens related to President Obama and to
Benghazi, Libya. Paul knew a lot about this ambassador relationship to which he
called the Corinthians (and us); he lived his life as an ambassador, and often
encountered those who disrespected the Authority he carried. Stoning and
imprisonment were regular rhythms of his life as Christ’s ambassador.
he understood this relationship to another degree, too. See, in a past life,
Paul — or Saul, as he was known then — sought out and murdered Christ’s
ambassadors, protesting the spread of the Gospel. In response, Christ turned his
wrath on Saul. He deployed the warships of his gaze onto the enemy of His
representatives. As a result, Saul became Paul. The enemy became the friend
became the ambassador. The wrath which Christ turned on the terrorist of the
Church was the fullness of His love.
is how the enemies of God are treated. P(ost-S)aul says it plainly in Romans:
“For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His
Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life” (5:10).
Ambassadors of Christ, we are called to treat our enemies in the same way. “But
I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who
hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you” (Matt.
5:44). As Christians, the warships sailing toward our enemies’ shores mustn’t
hold Tomahawk missiles, but meals, prayers, and buckets to wash the feet of
those who intend to dance on our graves.
easy to talk about this when it’s a conversation springboarded off of a tragedy
on the other side of the world. When it’s someone else’s enemies. When it’s
someone else’s coast.
what about our enemies at home?
do you perceive to be your enemy? Is it someone who shares your blood? Someone
in your office? Is it someone who lacks the right “papers”? Police officers? The
church on the corner? Politicians or murderers? The monkey suits in Wall St, or
the jumpsuits in penitentiaries?
is your God-ordered role as an Ambassador to those enemies? What about to those
in your city? Will they say, as President Obama said of Christopher Stevens,
that it’s a city you helped to save?
the way the world responds to tragedy and persecution isn’t the way heaven does.
We are here to represent heaven’s King, and are called to respond to His enemies
as He does. May your warships be loaded with love, may grace be its cargo, and
may there be reconciliation in its sails.
JOIN US AT PACIFIST FIGHT CLUB: ROUND 3 ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 15 AT BIOLA.