Christ’s love compels us – that is what motivates Chaplains to serve in the Defence Force said Grant Dibden, the Bishop to the Defence Force at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Sydney on Defence Sunday 2021.
Noting that it’s been a difficult year for everyone Bishop Dibden said that the ethos of service to the nation and its people is paramount for Defence Force members.
They surrender individual rights to the national need, have an obligation to adhere to laws beyond those applicable to the remainder of society, the authority and responsibility to use lethal force on behalf of the nation, and the obligation to follow orders even to the point of putting one’s life at risk. This make service in the Defence force unique.
Defence Chaplains live among our soldiers, sailors, and aviators sharing the dangers and hardships. Anglican Chaplains are sent into the Australian Defence Force to share the good news of Jesus. God is a sending God.
He sent Jesus into the world, and John 17:18 says as the Father sent Jesus, so Jesus sends His disciples into the world to share the good news of the gospel. Christians are sent people. Mission is on the very heart of God.
Pivotal to Bishop Grant’s message was 2 Corinthian 5:21. God takes the initiative and through His grace we are saved: “For our sake he made him (Jesus) to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God”. Absolutely amazing.
Believers have been made the righteousness of God. It doesn’t get any better than that! What a loving and gracious God!
We are ambassadors of Christ. We have the message of reconciliation which we must take to the world.
This is what motivates people to become Anglican chaplains. It motivates us to share the message of reconciliation in a winsome way, with gentleness and respect – but still to share it.
To help people who come to Christ to understand that they too are ambassadors and to teach them to share with others this wonderful message of reconciliation.
Anglican Chaplains ask God for opportunities to share the gospel, for open hearts. We love the people we serve with and show that in practical ways.