Recently I was talking with a ministry friend of mine, a man I like and respect. He loves the lost and wants to see churches make an impact in their communities. He has gifts and insights that I can learn from. But I was caught off guard by something he said about Ephesians 4:11.
C. Michael Patton:
Not too long ago I gave an assignment for a class I was teaching on Christian history. It was a biography on St Augustine. I was pretty excited to introduce people to a good friend whom they had (more than likely) never really met. He is a titan of the faith and has, over the years, become one of my best acquaintances. Yes, this guy came fully stocked with baggage. And yes, some of this baggage was lacking in modesty. But that is how it is with all my friends. They don’t have it all together. They never have. All of the greats of the past. Whether in theology or lifestyle, if you want to get to know the real thing, you are going to have to wade through some waters that are going to be far outside your comfort zone.
I’m a big fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. But one thing always confused me. Why did he call the last book The Return of the King? If you’ve read the book or seen the movie, you know that the title refers to the fact that the kingdom of Gondor has been without its rightful king for a very long time. And the true king of Gondor, Aragorn, has not yet returned to claim the kingdom as his inheritance. So, from the title, you presume that the heart of the book will be the return of Aragorn to reestablish the kingdom of Gondor.