Sunday, August 17


This is an excellent post by Brilliant at Breakfast, one of my favorite blogs. It is about the Saddleback Church forum on Saturday with Senator Obama and Senator McCain. More so, it is about what the writer calls "Clean Slate Christianity". There is absolutely no way I could possibly say it better. To read the entire post, go here. Here is a small snippet:

What's always bothered me about the kind of Christianity that's about faith not deeds is that it demands nothing of the believer. Even if I were inclined to believe that a Jewish guy got nailed to a cross 2000 years ago to cleanse the sins of the world, I don't think I'd see it as a free pass to do whatever the hell I want. And yet, for some believers, particularly some of the more holier-than-thou types in politics, believing this doctrine does exactly that. It seems to me that if someone went through that kind of torment for us, the least we should do is strive to be worthy of that kind of sacrifice. And yet, time after time, we have seen so-called Christian politicians invoke the sacrifice of Joshua of Nazareth as a kind of all-purpose cleansing cloth for the soul. "God has forgiven me" or "Jesus died for my sins" doesn't hold anywhere near the moral weight, as far as I'm concerned, as weighing the morality of one's deeds when faced with moral choices, and choosing the moral path just because it's the right thing to do. I wonder if this kind of "clean slate" Christianity just makes it too easy. Whether it's David Vitter patronizing prostitutes in New Orleans and then railing about the sanctity of marriage, or Larry Craig referring to Bill Clinton as "a very nasty boy" and then years later looking for sex with men in an airport rest room, or yes, John Edwards falling for some of the worst pickup lines in recorded history and still not being able to handle the idea of two guys who want to get married, I wonder if this Doctrine of Easy Forgiveness, instead of creating a moral standard to which we should strive to reach, actually creates a sense of infallibility -- that because Jesus died for our sins, we can do whatever the hell we want without consequences. After all, if all you need do to get into heaven is to believe this story, and that deeds don't matter, what's the point of doing good? I mean, if it doesn't buy you, say, a better table at the Pearly Gates Cafeteria, why not have the fun?

No comments:

Post a Comment