I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. Galatians 2:20
Here's a quote which wasn't quoted on your evening news:
"It's not a gray area, this is absolute misconduct. Not only should this cadet be punished but (also) his/her responsible USAFA cadet and officer chain of command that ignored this blatant and egregious violation of Air Force regulation 1-1 and the United States Constitution."
That cadet must have done a pretty bad thing, don't you think? Well, you haven't heard the half of it. The same individual said,
"It clearly elevated one religious faith (fundamentalist Christianity) over all others at an already virulently hyper-fundamentalist Christian institution. It massively poured fundamentalist Christian gasoline on an already raging out-of-control conflagration of fundamentalist Christian tyranny, exceptionalism, and supremacy at USAFA."
Wow! It appears to me the cadet in question must have been organizing some ultra-Christian fanatics, arming them, and sending them through the halls of the Air Force Academy to forcibly convert anyone who doesn't agree with them.
Yes, that's the way it seems, but that's not what happened. What happened was this: a cadet put a Bible passage on his white board, his personal message board, which hangs outside his room. He wasn't preaching; he wasn't arguing. He just posted a single Bible verse, the verse I read at the beginning of this devotion. It was that verse which provoked some complaints to the powers which be, and it is that verse which was taken down a little more than two hours later.
Now this devotion isn't about the Constitution or the freedoms of speech and religion. It's not about whether the white board is the personal space of the cadet or the public space of the institution. All of those things are beyond the scope and purview of this brief devotion.
Instead, I would like you to consider this: TO ILLICIT SUCH A RESPONSE THE WORD OF GOD MUST BE A PRETTY POWERFUL THING.
That's something many of us often forget.
When Jesus walked this earth, it was His enemies and the forces of evil that saw Him and His work most clearly. While the disciples were still trying to figure out who Jesus was, a devil had already acknowledged our Lord as the "Holy One of God" (see Mark 1:24). On Good Friday the disciples went into hiding, but the religious leaders went to Pilate and talked about Jesus' resurrection.
Similarly, this man who filed a complaint understands that Scripture can be a pretty powerful -- and to his way of thinking -- a pretty dangerous thing. And I suppose it is. After all, what other religion has a Savior who died, rose and transforms the hearts of those who are brought to faith in Him? I know of none, which is why His people are proud to proclaim: "Christ lives in me!"
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, help me to remember and relish the Good News of salvation, which was won by my dear Savior. May I be proud to witness to others that Christ lives in me. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries