This Series of Blogs provide vignettes of the early pioneers of The Muscular Christianity Era - Faith-Sport Integration who laid the foundations for the Modern Day Sports Outreach Movement
McBURNEY'S CORE VALUES - LEADING MEN TO JESUS
Robert McBurney said:
"The best thing for you and for me is to engage in earnest Christian work for the bodies and the souls of men. We might discuss creeds till doomsday, and I do not think anybody would be helped by it. It is touching men’s hearts and lives for Christ that is our business, since we both believe that we have been redeemed by his precious blood, and that today he is our advocate before the throne. I would advise you to . . . come into heart-touch with men - lost men, men who are astray, and when you come to make effort to lead such men into right living, you will be more and more impressed with the fact that only by God’s spirit, and through a new spirit begotten in them by the Holy Ghost, are they to be really helped.
Leading men to Christ was only the beginning for McBurney. He believed the building up of a new believer to be a foundational aspect of Y work and was accomplished through Bible Study. (H) He fully believed in the inspiration and authority of the Scriptures and taught them to men. One of the most popular Biblical classes he taught was entitled “Conversations with Jesus.” His philosophy of Bible study was two-fold. First, it should be practical in nature. He believed that a strictly “critical” study of the Bible would not help the common man and therefore the mission of the association Bible study was to help men in their daily life. His second philosophy of Bible Study was it was to lift up Jesus. He wrote: “the more we lift up Jesus Christ to the gaze of men, the more assuredly will men be drawn to him.”
Although McBurney was active in personally leading men to Christ and in leading association Bible Studies, he always believed and promoted the fact the work was to be done by young men for young men. He believed the role of the Secretary was to stay in the background and push the members to the foreground. He worked hard at training and directing others to do the work of the association. He was to be the one who cast the vision and the one who supported those who did the work. He believed the YMCA secretary was responsible for:
". . . the reaching of young men. He may have a model educational work, a good physical department, large meetings, and a thorough social atmosphere, but if he has not a band of workers who are personally reaching young men and winning them from sin to righteousness, from the world to the church of Jesus Christ, he is not fulfilling his responsibility.”
Doggett, pp. 146f.
Doggett, pp. 147f.
Doggett, p. 244.
This Blog is an excerpt from a future book: "Surrounded by Witnesses" by Dr. Greg Linville All rights reserved. For any reproduction right, including copying, computer reproduction, etc. contact:
Dr. Greg Linville at CSRM International C/O The World Outreach Center 5350 Broadmoor Circle N. w. Canton, Ohio – USA 44709 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Other blogs and articles on Local Church Sports, sports theology and ethics written by Dr. Greg Linville and other local church Sports, Rec & Fitness Ministers are archived at: http://www.csrm.org/blog/
Dr. Greg Linville was one of the founding members of CSRM and has served as the Executive Director since 2000. He served for 15 years as a local church sports and recreation minister and coached over 30 years at the junior high, high school and collegiate levels as well as 30 years in rec. leagues. Dr. Linville has consulted with churches from Australia, Africa, Asia, Australia, Caribbean, Europe, New Zealand and North America. He was awarded the world's first honorary Doctorate in Sports Ministry and holds an earned Doctorate as well. He is the author of Christmanship: The Theology of Competition & Sport. Dr. Greg has been married for over 35 years, is the father of two married children and the grandfather of a growing number of grandchildren.