Discussion in 'Non-Anglican Discussion' started by Religious Fanatic, Sep 12, 2018.
What do you think about this saying? Some people say it is an excuse to justify lax repentance.
It's stupid. Christians work towards sanctification and holiness. Whether or not an individual Christian actually becomes holier, we are all forced and obligated by the Gospel to be holier, and that alone makes us better than those who aren't trying to be holy at all.
It is all relative really. It is not just Christians that are 'forgiven' anyhow. (Read my signature). Everyone is 'forgiven' it is just that they have not all accepted and appreciated that forgiveness. That is similar to the Caribbean Buccaneers who refused the amnesty and just carried on plundering. Being forgiven, does not mean you can just go on behaving the same old way, without repercussions.
Some Christians will never be as nice as some heathen unbelievers. Faith is not about being 'naturally nice'. That is a question of manners and breeding. Becoming a disciple necessitates taking responsibility for one's personal conduct, bringing it into line with Christ's teaching, and consequently to ignore the teaching of one's master will incur discipline from Him. Just being 'forgiven' therefore is not all that is required of a Disciple of Christ. Of whom much has been given, much will be required. Lk.12:48.
I think most Christians say "Christians aren't better, just forgiven" because it is perfectly true. I presume most Christians agree they fall short in the sight of God. There is some evidence that Christians are only slightly "better" than non believers. This result slightly in favour of Christians might be in my opinion, that if you decide to be a mass murderer for example you probably wouldn't also choose to be a Christian.
But some 'Christians' became mass murderers as in Bosnia, Syria, Crusades, Nazi Germany, Russia, (Pogroms against Jews worldwide), etc. Lk.12:42-48
So in some respects, 'forgiven Christians' who behave in ways forbidden by their master, will face a harsher judgment than would 'unbelievers' who behaved in ignorance.
Yes I take your point. As an aside would (1) you, (2) the mass murderers and (3) God consider these people to be Christian?
Not what I would consider them to be, that is relatively unimportant. What Jesus Christ considers them to be, in terms of 'Discipleship', now that would be an entirely different matter. It would seem from the text I quoted that 'Discipline' would be involved. Especially appropriate for 'Disciples' who not only continued in their own way, rather than God's 'Way' but besmirched the name and character of God and Jesus Christ himself, and his church, by their disgracefully ungodly conduct.
"the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him in pieces and put him with the unfaithful."
It would seem that the very fact that they were disciples is the reason they will be put with the unfaithful. This seems to be an extreme sentence on the most serious cases of direct disobedience to Christ's command to 'Love one another as I have loved you'. It is difficult to see exactly what the difference might be between this category and the second one.
"And that servant who knew his master's will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating." This seem to be another category of offender, though still a category in which deliberate disobedience to Christ's commandment is involved. By deliberate I mean cases where the conscience is seared to the extent that the voice of The Spirit was heard but deliberately ignored. Unlike the first category though, the discipline seems not to result finally in being, 'put with the unfaithful'.
For a possible meaning of 'unfaithful' see Isa.1:21-28.
So 'discipline' may range from 'Utter Rejection', "I never knew you", to 'Severe Purging', to 'Admonishment' or 'an embarrassing dressing down'.
The letter of James would have something to say about this. James 2:14 NLT says "What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don't show it by your actions?". We are all forgiven, but this is on the condition of genuine repentance, the agreement with God that our past sins were wrong and that we should therefore not repeat them.
Christians are called, by Christ and by scripture to be better. If we are not better, how are we any more justified for salvation than the rest of the world?
James 2:26 - Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works.