Tuesday, June 16, 2015

on "love one another" (an excerpt)

Jesus’ clear intention with His commandment to love one another in John 15 was to ensure that the bonds of love within the Church would be strong enough to uphold her when the outside world rejected her, taunted her, and persecuted her again and again. Yet somehow, we have allowed a comfortable little falsehood to infiltrate our theology: the notion that this command to love one another really means we are “not being Christlike” if our actions or our words don't fall in line with what the rest of the world wants to see or hear. All too frequently, I see believers sacrifice all other allegiances at the altar of this one completely unbiblical idea. “Come as you are” and “We don’t want to turn anyone away” have become the hailed slogans of churches that are actually just disobedient, and believers that are actually just too afraid (or perhaps a better phrasing would be too faithless) to take the unpopular view. These would do well to remember that we were never called to appeal to the world, but to overcome it; that we were not asked to be “culturally relevant,” but to be holy. The truth of the Gospel is that Jesus gave the world the greatest act of love it has ever seen . . . and the world was offended by it. How can we truly call ourselves followers of this Master while we stand firmly on only those bits and pieces of Scripture that, conveniently removed from their actual context, allow us to guiltlessly feed our self-aggrandizing postmodern idealism and receive worldly applause for doing so?
- an excerpt from my current writing project

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