Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I didn't have to blame myself!

There is a quit smoking commercial on TV in which one of the actors says, “I didn’t have to blame myself.” I think this statement epitomizes one of the attitudes of our generation. The woman’s addiction to smoking is not her fault. It is someone (or something) else’s fault! Maybe it’s just my impression, but it seems like fewer and fewer people are willing to take responsibility for their own behavior.

I suspect that this is one of the reasons genuine, classic Christianity is so offensive to many people. Genuine Christianity says it is your fault! You have sinned against a Holy God! We’re not just talking about robbers and rapists and terrorists, but even those who imagine themselves to be “good” people. St. Paul says that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” and that the only way to be made right with God is through faith in Jesus Christ.

Non-Christians are those who say, no, I’m not a sinner. I’m basically a good person (or, even if I’m not a good person, I don’t need any God-crutch). Sure, I make mistakes but so does everyone and after all, it’s not really my fault anyway.

By contrast, Christians are those who drop all the excuses, recognize and sincerely repent of their sinfulness and turn in faith to Jesus Christ as their Lord.

Regardless of whether you are offended by this message or not, this is the message of genuine, classic, first-century Christianity as found in the Gospels and Paul. When you hear someone preaching some other version of Christianity you can be sure it is a perversion of the real deal.