9/10/2010 – Chuck Colson –
I have a burning passion—it’s the first item on my prayer list every day— and that’s to see a movement of Christians raised up from the churches to defend truth in the marketplace of ideas and to live out the gospel. Nothing less than this kind of an awakening can possibly save our quickly deteriorating culture.
That’s why I’m now spending all of my time working at BreakPoint and the Colson Center. One of my major projects is developing Christian leaders who can understand and defend a biblical view of all of life.
We call this the Centurions program. For the past six years we have brought 100 of the best and brightest into this year-long teaching effort, to study under some of the best minds in the Christian world. It’s demanding; we read books together, view movies and critique them; do a lot of teaching on line; and have three residencies during the year in Lansdowne, Virginia near our offices.
Our Centurion graduates are like the Marines or the Navy Seals who are on the front lines of the next wave of leaders.
Can this work? Just two weeks ago I was in Albuquerque, New Mexico, for a rally on behalf of the Manhattan Declaration. It was organized by the Catholic Archbishop of New Mexico, Michael Sheehan, and a former congressman named Bill Redmond, who is a Centurion graduate. You can imagine my thrill when I walked into the convention center to see 1,600 participants. And they were on fire! They were there to learn biblical worldview, to learn how to defend the sanctity of human life, traditional marriage, and religious liberty, to learn how to become activists!
There were representatives from across the denominational spectrum: Southern Baptists, Nazarenes, Assemblies of God, Methodists, Presbyterians, Catholics. The Church had come together.
And all of this was organized by one gutsy archbishop and one Centurion graduate. They in fact have built a powerful network across the state of New Mexico.
So yes, it can be done. And our Centurions are doing a whole variety of important tasks across the spectrum. Like Jon Blankmeyer, who founded a safe home for girls rescued from forced prostitution. Josue Delgado, a hospital chaplain who teaches Emergency Medical Technicians on how to build stronger marriages. Kathy Peele, who founded a group to help mothers under distress, and so many more.
By the time they are certified, Centurions know how to write, discuss, and teach Christian worldview in all sorts of settings. They know how to create God-honoring culture through the arts, media, literature, and business. They’re able to debate ethical challenges with medical professionals, advocate human rights, and develop tomorrow’s leaders by raising children grounded in biblical values.
In short, they learn to defend Truth in an age in which many believe such a thing does not exist. Look folks, the reason the Church today is having so little impact is too many Christians view their faith only in terms of a personal relationship with Jesus. But Christianity does not stop with salvation; that’s only the beginning. We’ve got to learn how to present our worldview in a winsome way. And if we don’t do this, it’s simply dooms our churches to isolation and irrelevence–just when our culture desperately needs the hope of the gospel more than ever.
To learn how to apply for the next class of Centurions, please visit BreakPoint.org. The deadline is November 30.
Come, join us. Become a Centurion. It will change your life, and who knows–God willing, it may change our culture.
HT: Break Point