John Paul II: You must realize that you must make real
the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Only in this way is it possible to change
the world. Your aspiration is that the world should be changed. I say: you should change the
Orthodox Church: (A statement on Church and Politics)
In participating in government and political processes, the Orthodox
laity are called to base their work on the norms of the gospel's
morality, the unity of justice and mercy (Ps. 85:10), the concern for
the spiritual and material welfare of people, the love of the
fatherland and the desire to
transform the surrounding world according to the word of Christ.
World Council of Churches:
on the theme of the WCC 9th Assembly: God,
in your grace, transform the world. . . . .The world
matters to God (Jn.
3:16) and should matter to us. We are required to deny ourselves (Mt.
16:24), not the world. Only
those who deny them selves can become
partners with God in transforming the world.
In John 3:16, we
learn that God loved the world. He sent his Son. Does he say He sent
him to change or transform the world? No. Why then? For this purpose, ..that whoever believes in him
might not perish, but should have eternal life. What of those not believing? He
who does not believe is condemned already (Jn.3:18).
These are the world; their works are evil and they hate the Light and they do not change. Who,
then, or what is changed? Only those who believe in him. Let us confirm
this: Are believers of the world? If you were of the
world, the world was philia-loving its own. But because you [are] not
of this world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the
world hates you (Jn.15:19). Only
the believer is transformed, who is not of the world. It is
simple: the world does not change so that the Father did not send the
Son to transform it. Yes, the world matters to God and to us who
believe. It does not follow that the Father is transforming the world,
or that he would have us transform that which does not change!
This doctrine is not only false, it is nonsense.
In the Parable of the
field is the world (vs. 38). On finding
tares in the field (world) the
slaves say: Do you wish therefore when we go that we gather them?
But he tells them, No, lest gathering the tares you
uproot the wheat with them. Allow them to grow together until
the harvest, and in the time of the harvest I will say to the
harvesters: Gather first the tares and bind them into bundles in order to burn them,
but the wheat gather into my storehouse. We are forbidden to root out evil from
the world! The Lord prayed for his disciples, not for the world!
I ask concerning them, not concerning the world do I ask (Jn.17:9).
He teaches us to set our hearts on what is in heaven, and not on
anything on the earth, but all who seek to change the world have their
hearts set on their vision of a transformed world - a new earth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also (Mt.6:21). The Great Principle
controls. Only those who love their lives in the world seek to remodel
the world. Their factions war to change their world, or to prevent