Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Let's remember, once again. . .


Blogger Ed G. said...

While I can always use a reminder not to be so full of myself, not sure I agree with jared's conclusions. While we are broken, sinful, hard and selfish... when God looks at us, I think he sees awesome.

And when we look at each other, we shouldn't see broken, sinful, hard and selfish, we should see awesome.

Julie Clawson just wrote a diary that I found particularly interesting... would be interested in your thoughts.

12:25 PM, January 06, 2009  
Blogger nAncY said...

God's Love is awesome.

and i would like to see more on ed's thoughts.

my thoughts are that Love covers a lot of sin.

12:31 PM, January 06, 2009  
Blogger David Cooke said...

I am chewing on this post. Very thought-provoking. Thank you.

12:54 PM, January 06, 2009  
Blogger Charlie said...

I am with Ed on this. When God looks on us he sees the righteousness of Christ in which we are clothed. I am also with Nancy, love (and of course the cross and resurrection)do indeed cover a lot of sin.

Is this not the wonder of a graceful and merciful God: that even though he knows us, he covers us with the righteousness of his Son and looks on us as new creations?

4:20 AM, January 07, 2009  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Ed & Charlie: thanks for sharing your thoughts. Yes, of course, when God looks at us in Christ, he sees awesome, but that's because he's seeing not us and our sin, but Christ and his righteousness. Christians are new creations, washed in the blood of the lamb. What Christians in North America seem to undervalue, and what I think Jared is getting at, is that a Christian's righteousness exists only through and in Christ.

North Americans are probably the most solipsistic people in history. Daily we drink from a gusher of commercial advertisements telling us how awesome we are and that we deserve to have every need fulfilled-Now! We lap up the messages of pop psychologists telling us "You're awesome just the way you are." The fact that every human being is indeed created in God's image adds just enough truth to this assertion to make it appealing and give it a truthy ring. Still, whatever portion of truth that attitude may contain is so incomplete as to make it, in sum, a lie.

Sadly, many preachers proclaim a similar false message of how awesome we are, as if we deserve God's grace: release the giant within; you deserve to live the abundant life now, etc.

The message of God's Word is quite different, however: "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God," and "the wages of sin is death..."

So one extreme of untruth is the you-are-awesome-just-the-way-you-are meme. Declaring that none of us is awesome on our own, however, is not an argument for the other extreme. Ed, you asked me to have a look at Julie Clawson's post. Her main point seems to be this: "The idea seems to be that if some sort of sin can be pinned on a person that gets us off the hook for having to love them." It may be true that some Christians try to make such an argument, but that line of thinking runs counter to more biblical thinking than the other error.

In short, "God doesn't think you're awesome" might be restated thus: "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives within me."

8:38 AM, January 07, 2009  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Nancy & David: Thanks for your comments, too. Peace.

8:40 AM, January 07, 2009  
Blogger Ed G. said...

Milton: Thanks for the great and thougtful feedback. Truth is, I do agree with you and jared.

Having spent some time the past few months on left-leaning political blog, i am just saddened to see that so many people are turned off to God because the people who "represent" Christ spend most of the time telling them they are bad.

we should hold fellow Christ followers accountable, but the idea of holding others accountable (in lieu of introducing them to Christ) doesn't seem to work as well.

i think the key is to help people fall in love with Christ first... after that, the truth becomes self-evident.

11:39 AM, January 07, 2009  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Thanks for the input, Ed. Peace.

2:10 PM, January 07, 2009  

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