Pastoral Letter

“All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirit.” ~ Proverbs 16:2

Dear Zion,

The grace of God be with you all. Amen.

The Lord came to forgive sins, and we got caught trying to stop Him: there, in a nutshell, is the cross. Indeed, it looked as though the human race had won for a few days. Jesus was good and dead and silent. But then God’s boy proved Himself loud and uncontrollable: He rose! He announced forgiveness again—and this time, because He had just suffered our murder of Him, His forgiveness was louder than words.

I do wish this gospel would grip, convict, and comfort our nation.

To know Christ crucified is to know the terrifying truth: there’s a crucifixion lurking in all of us, ready to spring like a mousetrap and break God’s neck. Facing that truth, we find ourselves stripped of any claim to superiority or rightness. We stand condemned.

A nation gripped by such truth has no time for self-righteousness and scoffing.

Yet to know Christ risen is to know the awesome truth: there’s a resurrection for each of us, a forgiveness despite the murder, ready to spring like a rose and bless the earth. Held in that truth, we find ourselves loved well beyond our deserving. We stand in a whole new creation.

A nation gripped by such truth is truly free, too busy loving and forgiving to hate.

In His unsearchable wisdom, God has made us Americans. It is no accident: “He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having allotted determined periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God” (Acts 17:26-27). You, Zion, are a heavenly kingdom, sent to believe and confess the truth that sets this earthly nation free. Let it be so!

Pastor Gjerde