Faith vs Knowledge (5)

Knowing Christ today, according to Willard, involves putting aside all the superstition and the religious paraphernalia to focus on the humanity of Christ.  In other words, if one moves quickly past the historical Jesus and into the spiritual realm, they miss what Jesus actually stood for (and what He stood against). 

When it comes to morality, Willard offers it has been slowly redefined, so that even the standards once set by God are now called into question.  Just take a look at the supreme court docket and what they are asked to “decide”.  Just a few short years ago, some of those things were considered untouchable.  Now, everything is open for debate.  Science, psychology, and the idea of “If it feels good, do it!” have also led to the absence of moral knowledge throughout the last few centuries.

It seems to me that Willard is on to something.  The decline of morality didn’t happen over night.  Question is: As believers hoping to affect change in our society, is all a lost cause?  In other words, is anything salvageable or must we start from scratch again.  Lord, how we need your help!

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7 Responses to “Faith vs Knowledge (5)”

  1. Brother, the “Light” shines brightly! I believe that “we” as a society, have become immoral. That said, do not each one of us have a responsibilty for our own behavior? We as Christians can not let society as a whole rule our lives! The Word of God teaches us what is expected. We have a a spiritual example of what is right through Jesus Christ! His actions whiles on earth, sets forth our “rules” to live by. Sure we fall short, but should we not continue to be striving to be the deciples of Christ? When the swamp is full of alligators, it is time to drain the swamp!

    • Hello Larry. I believe we have an individual responsibility. I understand Scripture to teach I will one day stand before God and answer for what I have done or what I haven’t done. I also believe in a corporate responsibility. The Israelites were judged as a community for their failure to obey God’s Law. Why would we be any different? When morals are watered down on a societal level, we all pay the price.

      I love the alligators and swamp metaphor. It’s time to drain!

      Check out 2 Timothy 3:1-9.

      • Brother, we got lots of gators! When I refference the 2 tim. 1-9, am I wrong thinking we can’t afford to let society rule? We are in this world, but not of this world. So, shouldn’t we try decipleship on everyone we meet? Or, should we let society tell us what to think? Jesus is my “commanding officer”, he is the only one I look to please!

      • I don’t believe you’re wrong. However, the point is (as Willard states), morality has been lost over a period of time. And Paul warns Timothy it’s naive to think it will get any better. When mankind is allowed to create or destroy, what ultimately happens? Of course, we destroy. Does that mean we shouldn’t do our part to instill morality in those we love or ourselves? Of course not! And discipleship should be one of our primary goals. But I believe what Paul says in the text. In the last days, mankind will do what he wants. Let’s continue the conversation on the next post.

  2. I think immorality has always been an issue – Look at Cain and Able and then the times of Noah, and then the times of Lot… and so on… but in those Bible times, the re-occurring theme is that there was this one person or group of people who God looked upon with favor. And that group or that person, pursued God’s knowledge and what they “knew” and passed it on. They didn’t forget.

    A lot of Followers of Christ want to touch the world – but in their own way – in their own terms. Sometimes I think there are a lot of Followers who do not see the need that is right there in their home. Their kids, their blood relatives, their neighbors, the kids down the street, the co-workers, the stranger next to you in line… Maybe we do need to start from scratch and begin with examining ourselves and asking God to show us where we are lacking in His knowleldge.

    We cannot be lovers of our own lives and what we have in this world. Jesus wasn’t.

    • Hey Maria!
      Just some thoughts: Cain, Abel, Noah, Lot, etc. were all before the Torah or God’s Law. However, there was definitely unwritten rules which convicted them of their sin. I’m not sure I understand what you mean by “They didn’t forget.” If I hear you right, I’d have to disagree. Consider David or the Israelites. Read the book of Hosea?

      As I read Willard and his idea of KNOWING CHRIST TODAY, morality was defined by God through the life of Christ. In other words, Christ Jesus displayed what following God’s precepts actually looked like. It’s that morality that has gone by the wayside.

      As for the social/missional aspect(s) of what you say, I agree.

  3. I see what you mean. The Israelites did forget God time and time and time again. When I said “they didn’t forget” I meant the people like Noah and Lot – they didn’t forget God in the midst of the immorality of their time and God found favor in them and delivered them from the destruction He brought about – that’s what I meant; but yes, I see what you mean 😉

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