A City Set on a Hillsong: Why Light Can’t Worship with Darkness
By Dan Crabtree - Posted at The Cripplegate:From the beginning, Jesus told his disciples that their godliness could not be a secret. He said, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden” (Matt 5:14). Then he instructed them, “let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (5:16). The light of kingdom righteousness in them could not be hidden, so they were commanded to let the world see it shine through their conduct. Christians are supposed to stand out conspicuously for their integrity, their heavenly love, and their piety. Christ’s light cannot be hidden.
But the reverse, as God would have it, is also true. That is, ungodliness can no more stay hidden than godliness cannot shine. In God’s economy, there are no secret deeds, only those yet to be exposed. Or, as Jesus says it, “Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops” (Luke 12:2-3). Light will always shine, but so too will darkness always come to light.
The sad news from Hillsong these past few weeks reminds us that as the kingdom of light will always make itself known, so too will the kingdom of darkness. And that should shape how we worship.
Here’s what happened. The Hillsong church network, known for its successful music empire, was shaken in January when its founder and global senior pastor Brian Houston stepped back from ministry to focus on upcoming legal proceedings. Houston faces charges for allegedly concealing a serious indictable offense of another person, specifically the assault of a young man in 1970 by Houston’s father, Frank Houston. According to the announcement, Brian Houston would plead not guilty to the charges and was expected to return to his role as senior pastor following the deliberations.
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