Need for Emphasis on Christ

To conclude this series, I appeal to the main meaning of believing in the Bible: that it points only to Christ. However, as Christians, at some point we wonder how we should act. Obviously, it would have to be how Christ would act. However, the concern of many is with salvation and the way to it. From this point come the two extremes: work and earn salary or earn salary and after work. Analyzing the biblical context, it seems that the text of James 2:26 contradicts the passage from Romans 1: 16-17:

I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first of the Jew, then of the Greek. For in the gospel is revealed the righteousness of God, a righteousness which is from first to last by faith, as it is written, "The just shall live by faith."

I can assert, with the assurance of a good many Christians, that the works quoted in James 2:26 are evidences of faith, not a requirement for it. Implication comes next, when we want to be sure, even if our natural forces are contrary to God: how can man, fallen, understand his own fall, and have an idea that he is doing good or bad deeds? Or, is it possible to measure how much of the works are expected from someone genuinely saved by Christ?

If the answer were for me, for the thoughts I have about it, I could be calmer and worried every day. Calm, for I have noticed that every attitude I have always carries some questioning of right or wrong, although I am never always right or always wrong; and worried about doing more wrong than right. This would indicate that even though I felt inside that I really disagree with the laws of this world, which would be wonderful, I can think that my fall every day is a possibility, which would give me responsibilities to the same extent of security .

The interpretation of this becomes quite varied, but it always goes to extremes. Two common doctrines now of the unconcerned extreme, that of the Demons and that of the "Almighty One," tend to be the most common. When we put the blame on the demons, as if we were not guilty of anything that happened externally, we live without a real concern for the things of God. Neo-Pentecostalism, for example, teaches this. The need to go to church, for a basic discharge, becomes as pertinent as bathing or shaving. On the other hand, the doctrine of the "Omnipotent Sin" is as frightening as. It says that we are so slaves of Sin and that Sin is something so great that it comes to the absurdity of condemning our freedom, as if it were as or greater in power as the Grace of God. This blasphemy causes, for example, the libertines, who have such an argument: "If we are all slaves of sin, and Divine Grace can not save everyone, then there is no participation of ours and therefore what to worry about with something?". Lack of responsibility becomes commonplace at these extremes. If we were unconscious, perhaps, it would be doable.

However, how could we sleep at night if we lived with the most worried extreme? I agree that saying that there are "merits" is a bit forced. Responsibilities are more enjoyable. If we lived by an infinite staircase, where we have to try to reach the highest, we would go only vanity. A rich Christian could have more "heavenly benefits" if he donated millions to the work of Christ than a thousand poor Christians. There is not much to talk about. In fact, salvation will never be given primarily by works (I add that vanity is not a reflection of this extreme only, since to think that you are saved and free from responsibilities is still a kind of vanity). In all cases, the righteous will live by faith.

The election and the guarantee of salvation are even more controversial points, although, in my opinion, much of what we care about are active attributes of God and it is not for us to know, without reason for debate (in this case, the extremes "I am elected "and" I do many works "are clear examples of which, by stirring much, we will also arrive at vanities). There is, however, a range of puerile arguments in the Arminian-Calvinist debate, which I would call literary jugglings to pull back and forth (perhaps because of this, excellent Christian writers such as Lewis, Chesterton and Dostoevsky were unaware of this debate ). Let's look at the example of 2 Pe 2: 20-22:

For if, after having escaped the corruptions of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they were again entangled in them and conquered, their last state became worse than the first. For it was better for them not to know the way of righteousness than to know it, to turn away from the holy commandment which was given them. So it came to pass, that by a true proverb it was said, The dog returned to his own vomit; the washed nut, to the mud pit.

For some, whoever has never really known Christ, can fall (but fall from where?). Others say that man can receive Grace and fall several times, something that has no consistency. What reasoning should we follow? As I see it, only Christ. Faith, as a starting point, makes us want to be like Christ. To be like Christ would therefore be a reflection of these works. Christ himself said, "I tell you the truth: what you did to some of my least brothers, they did to me" (Matthew 25:40). In fact, every 25th chapter of Matthew is pretty much a commandment to get off the pew and be a Christian indeed. I do not say to become a Mother Tereza of Calcutta, who was better known for her image of charity (and made her "holy") than for the work itself, but also not to become Masonic and think that only our Christian milieu and "supposedly saved" is that you need help. The church needs help, though it was not for the legalists or hypocrites that Jesus came, but for the lost.

Whether it makes sense to some or not, the whole gospel comes down to what we should be and recognize in John 3:16. Recognizing God's infinite love for us, we can believe in His righteousness. Having this settled in our hearts, we can not only hope for eternal life but also a desire to share this message.

Nenhum comentário

Tecnologia do Blogger.