Tweaking Your Doctrine

"[It’s all about] Life versus death, not good versus evil. Godly means life-bringing; ungodly means death-bringing…" [ht: belowthesurface]

Now if that doesn’t kink your chain, nothing will.

Have we as Christians been fighting the wrong battle? Have we put such an emphasis on "being right" that we’ve left behind the goal of bringing life to the world around us? The answer to that rhetorical question, I think, is yes – we have. We focus on doing the right things, thinking the right doctrine, believing the right set of beliefs.

And we don’t leave it there, since we look at the rest of the world in judgment. We call it "evangelism" and "sharing our faith" – but in reality, we stand as judge over someone else’s life, don’t we? We stereotype believers on this side, unbelievers on that side, and we well-intentionedly share our testimonies and the Four Spiritual Laws ™ – in essence, we try to argue the other-sided unbelievers into mental assent to join our side. We make the "good news" seem good because we make the "bad news" so bad – in doing this, do we instigate a bait-and-switch worthy of the best used car lots in town? Our white-washed tombs are full of death, no matter how pretty, clean and right they might be.

The problem with Eve’s first choice in Genesis 3, and Adam’s following in agreement, was that "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil" meant that there was some other non-God-focused way to judge right and wrong. But that’s not even the best pivot to hinge on – I like the quote at the top, thinking that it’s Life vs. Death, not always just Good vs. Evil. If the Good is somehow bringing Death – like legalism, or social liberation without some sort of discipline – then it’s not worth fighting for or standing on. By the same view, is there someway to see that bringing something Evil or bad might actually be Life-giving, like Jesus’ sacrifice or choosing to suffer somehow so that others might live?

What freedom would we have if we focused less on being right, and focused more on bringing life?


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