Morality Is Not The Baseline

Jared Wilson once again skewers the idea that the aim of Christianity is to produce good people, or better people. The bottom line is lots of folks do good stuff and are 'good' by any worldly standard and do so with no help at all from any church or from Christ. Jared writes:

... the still persisting message of the American evangelical church, that of "Be a better you thanks to God" or what-have-you, is a powerless, un-compelling message. Aside from the fact that "Behave!" is not the message of the gospel or the concerted call of Scripture, it is not something that will appeal to millions of Americans who think they're doing pretty well already, thank you very much. They love animals, provide for their families, give to charities, cry when "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" ends, and aspire to justification by recycling. And see the dangers of p*rn and the moral bankruptcy of many modern films. Why add the baggage of church when they're managing moral just fine?

As long as 'Church folk', or at least the politically vocal ones, connect Christianity to good behavior, the church will continue to loose the attention of the population. Christianity is all about how we cannot become good people until we fall at the feet of the only true good man to ever live.

If anything, Christianity is about demonstrating the truth than people are incapable of any meaningful goodness at all so that they may see that they must turn to Christ's goodness if they wish to be rescued.

So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members.What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God--through Jesus Christ our Lord!

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5 Comments

Can I ask you to elaborate? :-D

I'd respectfully disagree. Christ is the baseline. Those with out Christ can and do love, but without Christ they are still without hope.

I agree that Christ is the baseline. What I am missing though is losing the attention of the population.

I mean Jesus didn't always get or want attention. Even if we get the world's attention, we are going to be rejected anyway.

Am I missing something?

Maybe. :-P

Gaining the attention of the population isn't the goal, per se, but then again if we are to go and make disciples, we must get their attention, call them to something. The most visible, arguably, portions of modern Christianity seems to be selling the 'better you' gospel of self improvement and improved behavior.

The point wasn't what to do to get the attention of the population, if anything it's speaking out against seeking that attention.

Maybe I mis-stated the point. Does that clarify?

That does - I seem to have famously missed the point.

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  • That does - I seem to have famously missed the point....

  • Maybe. :-P Gaining the attention of the population isn't the goal, per se, but then again if we are to go and make disciples, we must get their attention, call them to something. The most visible, arguably, portions of...

  • I agree that Christ is the baseline. What I am missing though is losing the attention of the population. I mean Jesus didn't always get or want attention. Even if we get the world's attention, we are going to be rejecte...

  • Can I ask you to elaborate? :-D I'd respectfully disagree. Christ is the baseline. Those with out Christ can and do love, but without Christ they are still without hope....

  • Love is the baseline. ...

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