There have been periods in Christians history that persons have been dealt with as if they were means rather than ends.
But Christianity at its highest and best has always insisted that persons are intrinsically valuable.
They have looked forward for a time to come when the law of love becomes the law of life.
In the light of all that we have said about Christianity as a value philosophy, where does the ministry come into the picture?
This religion of experience by which man is aware of God seeking him and saving him helps him to see the hands of God moving through history.
Religion has to be interpreted for each age; stated in terms that that age can understand.It begins and ends with the assumption that Christ is the revelation of God.We might ask what are some of the specific values that Christianity seeks to conserve?But the essential purpose of religion remains the same.It is not to perpetuate a dogma or theology; but to produce living witnesses and testimonies to the power of God in human experience. It insists that there are eternal values of intrinsic, self-evidencing validity and worth, embracing the true and the beautiful and consummated in the Good.This concern for the good life and the value of life is no where better expressed than in the words of Jesus in the gospel of John: “I came that you might have life and that you might have it more abundantly.” This emphasis has run throughout the Christian tradition.Christianity has always had a concern for the elimination of disease and pestilence.114: “The theology of any generation cannot be understood, apart from the conditioning social matrix in which it is formulated.All systems of theology are as transient as the cultures they are patterned from.” King further developed this theme in his dissertation: “[Tillich] finds a basis for God's transcendence in the conception of God as abyss.Gautama bids us flee from the world, but Jesus would have us use it, because God has made it for our sustenance, our discipline, and our happiness. This is something of what Schweitzer has called “reverence for life.” Hunan being must always be used as ends; never as means.So that the Christian view of the world can be summed up by saying that it is a place in which God is fitting men and women for the Kingdom of God. I realize that there have been times that Christianity has short at this point.