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Ordered Grace

Had lunch in an Amish farm kitchen a while back, with some Quaker pastors. Our Amish hostess had 12 children, 61 grandchildren, and counting. She looked remarkably cheerful for someone feminists would say is oppressed and reduced to baby making. The topic of shunning came up – which the Amish practice according to Mt. 18. Our hostess described one of her sons-in-law who abandoned his wife and seven children – “because he preferred a pick-up truck to his family.” His name was removed from the book containing the names of all the Amish community members within a square mile. The community pitched in to help the abandoned wife and children. A local Quaker pastor recently convinced the man to return to his family after four years of absence. His name will be restored to the book as he gives evidence of resuming his responsibilities. Is this loving? Absolutely! Is this biblical? Absolutely! Does this involve confronting sin? Absolutely! Does this involve forgiveness? Certainly, but not the cheap kind. Quakers used to call this “gospel order”.

Published inFamilyHoliness

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