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Posts Tagged ‘Mere Christianity’


Tim Stafford wisely avoids the issue of justification in this interview.  This makes for a less controversial, and more accessible interview.  The impetus seems to be his new book, Simply Christian.  This book is something of a Mere Christianity for our time.  Where Lewis wrote to communicate with Moderns, Wright writes to communicate with Postmoderns.

This leads to an interesting discussion of the appeal of Gnosticism, and the way in which we have tried to tame Jesus and the implications of the Gospel (something I can agree with NT on).  We turned a faith that turned the ancient world upside-down into a status quo, boring faith.  Gone is the faith that inspired martyrs to face certain death from Roman authorities (and in some place in the world still does inspire martyrs).

But in the West, Christianity has been seduced into becoming a more nominal, uninspiring sort of thing. On the Right, he points to the idols of War & Money.  I’m not so sure I agree on the first one.  I don’t think Conservative Christians are war mongers.  But we have been seduced by money and power.  To maintain them, we lose the focus on sacrifice and personal holiness for the sake of mission the New Testament clearly teaches.  One the left is, according to Wright, love/sex.  I think this idol crosses all lines, and is not the sole or primary problem of Liberals or Liberal Christianity.  Just as many Liberal Christians are also consumed by money and power.

“Because the great emphasis in the New Testament is that gospel is not how to escape the world; the gospel is that the crucified and risen Jesus is the Lord of the world.  And that his death and Resurrection transform the world, and that transformation can happen to you.  You, in turn, can be part of the transforming work.”

Yes, we evangelicals focus so much on ‘heaven’ we neglect the reality of the kingdom that is present and seeks to transform cultures through the gospel (not law or politics).  We neglect the fact that God is up to something awesome as He continues to apply the work of Jesus to people in this world, and uses believers to do it.  We have so privatized and individualized faith that our faith is not a danger to anyone, including ourselves.

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