Sunday, November 4, 2007

Moral Enough to Hate

I don't get it. Why do Christians become arrogant about their morality? When you became a follower of Jesus, you sang these words, "I once was lost but now I am found". Somehow along the way, we forget ever being lost; somehow we discovered ourselves to be moral people and are quite proud of it.

Here's the dilemma: Jesus died for our sins, "while we were still sinners" (Romans 5:8). On the other hand we read in 1 Timothy 1:15, "Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst." "Of whom I AM the worst." Do we ever forget who we are? Do we ever leave behind the fact that we are saved by the grace of God and if not for the Lord's mercy, we would still be doing the "mess around?"

Several decades ago God delivered me from a gripping drug addiction. I know deep down I did not deliver myself from these mind-warping drugs. God performed that supernatural blessing. Ever since, I have not touched any psychedelic drugs (I do take Tylenol if that's okay). Praise the Lord. Do I now have the right to be arrogant about my lack of drug addiction? Can I look down on someone still psychologically hooked on pot? Does anyone have the right to be arrogant about their spirituality and resulting morality? I don't think so.

Whatever the sin the Lord delivered you from-sexual immorality, drunkenness, lying, stealing, violence or being an expert con-once you've allowed His grace to touch your life, you give up the right to be prideful, judgmental and boastful about your present moral state.

Don't you love it when Christians become all high and mighty judging the sins of others and naming calling people who commit crimes or rebel against the Lord? After God has worked for years conforming us to the image of His Son, do we now take His supernatural work and make it our own?

We kick God out the picture, beat our chest and cry out, "Look at me! I'm not gay. I never had an abortion. I never committed fornication. I never stole money. I'm perfect and godly and a wonderful Christian. I'm Ned Flanders!"

Baloney! Where is the grace of God in this kind of attitude? Where is a sense of the Lord's mercy on our lives in His forgiveness of us? I pity the people who are fighting a losing battle against certain sins. Is there room for them in a church filled with arrogant moralists? Is there any space for these honest souls who can't seem to find victory over their vices? Instead, they receive condemnation, isolation and turned up noses by other Christians. I'm sorry but that is not Christianity. It's moralism, and I believe some Christians cannot tell the difference.

Jesus did not die to make us moral. God has saved us to be holy like Him through His power. But that fact is to keep up humble not puffed up. A prideful self righteous Christian is a contradiction. A moral Christian who looks down at others has not taken their sins to the cross. They sidestepped the cross, took the moral principles of the New Testament and now are empowered to hate others who cannot conform to the standards.

How do you hate or look with disdain upon anyone committing heinous sins? Are you any better? Yes, you may answer. But why? Who made you better? God did! The Lord changed your heart. You better get on your knees before the Lord and thank Him for your deliverance and get up from your knees in humility not pride. If you are still filled with pride, get back on your knees. You still haven't gotten the message of Christianity.

It's the people who know their sins and are candid enough to admit they need the Lord to make it through every day, who are the honest Christians. The rest of us are hypocrites, still unable to see ourselves as we truly are. Of course, I am a hypocrite for judging people who are hypocrites and critical moralists. At least I know I am still a sinner. Praise be to God.

1 comment:

hagcrew said...

Amen Louis! This judgmental, hypocritical attitude on the part of many of our Brothers and Sisters has always disappointed me. Thanks for having the courage to say it out loud. ~ Amy