Here are 6 of one or half-dozen of another posts I have found around the web (or are sent to me) that I have found interesting, funny, insightful, or thoughtful:
I posted about this a week ago, but the new-ish fad of virtue signaling is just same old living by the law when we should live by grace instead.
Excerpt: “Virtue signalers want to appear virtuous, to be considered good and to be affirmed as such by others. But often they are signaling their virtues to people whom they do not consider virtuous. Virtue signalers aren’t interested in gaining their approval. But they are also trying to gain self-approval. They need to think of themselves as virtuous. So why is this? It points to our primal need to be justified. And our inability to justify ourselves. We are actually not good because we fail to keep God’s Law. So we make up our own laws that are easier to fulfill. But we generally fail at those too. This is all evidence of our need for Christ to justify us.”
Stories are powerful but we very rarely know their impact on other and ourselves. Today there is a new narrative: one that teaches virtue signaling and moralizing in the name of love that is not love.
Excerpt: “We tell such stories to encourage believers and to persuade unbelievers. Our stories serve as ministry to the saved and evangelism to the lost. They add flesh and experience to what may otherwise be mere theology, mere ideas. Ultimately, we hope these stories will lead others to investigate and accept the great story God is telling in and through his world. This new gospel is hijacking the power of story and Christian respect for story in order to achieve its goals. “I find stories are a lot more compelling than arguments,” says James Martin. “One of the stories I like to tell people is about a gay friend of mine named Mark. Mark was in a religious order and left. He ended up marrying his partner, with whom he’s been together for 20 years. One of the things he has done is care for his partner through a long-term serious illness. I often say to people, ‘Is this not a form of love?’ I just ask that question. So I think it’s less about argumentation than it is about stories, more about what Pope Francis calls a ‘culture of encounter.’”
The power of Lub is taking the place of what love it. We need to go back to what the Bible says about it.
Excerpt: “Love” is now a universal term for nothing in particular, which makes conversations about it difficult.Thinking ourselves wise, we made a bad deal. We’ve been snookered, sure that we were upgrading when in truth we were sold a clunker. But enough with the finger-pointing. Being right about others being wrong is useless unless we’re willing to correct ourselves by turning to God’s Word. Here are five things the Bible says about love.”
We need to make sure we are not mere sentimentalists or emotionless robots. Our emotions should not be on just the happy but on the good, pure, and holy.
Excerpt: “Why would we strive for holiness, or live sacrificially for Christ, if we are emotionally neutral regarding the truths of the gospel? But if we see ourselves, poignantly, as sinners rescued by his death on the cross, and if we rejoice in his triumph over sin and death in the resurrection, then we are prepared to act. That’s why we need the right kind of emotions, passions, and affections, which are typically stirred under exposure to the truth of the Word.”
A 3rd part in a great series. This one gives the approach to talk about the beauty of the Gospel and not just the intellectual reasons for it.
Excerpt: “Where I am deeply compelled to believe is that, in addition to the intellectual case, I find the Christian thesis so very attractive. So as we make a case for Christianity to our kids, I think they need to know that it is the greatest story ever told. And the story of Christianity provides us with a story and a purpose. It should also profoundly motivate us to live as Jesus lived, full of grace and truth. He loved the unlovely and the humble, but called out arrogance and religiosity.”?