Sunday, March 20, 2005


Internet Monk Strikes Again

Michael Spencer has "penned" another outstanding essay over at Internet Monk. (HT: Transforming Sermons) I, like Milt, think that Michael has a genuine prophetic voice -- the kind of voice I would like to have if my overwhelming sarcasm did not get in the way.

At any rate, this essay is really about the difference between just "being saved" and really following Jesus. I agree with everything that Michael has to say, though I might be a little less passionate in how I say it. Michael uses the different emphasis of the Pauline epistles and the gospels as the dividing line in his comparison. I understand his point, and in my life when I quit studying the epistle and started studying the gospels is when I really began to understand sanctification and the truly transformative and self-sacrificial nature of a relationship with Jesus Christ. The gospels made me a Calvinist.
Let's be honest. A lot of Christians have no idea what to do with the Gospel accounts of Jesus' ministry. What does it mean? What does it have to do with evangelism, church growth and "having a great life now?"
But that said, I think Michael is too dismissive of the Pauline epistles. After I made my gospel discoveries, I reread the epistles and Paul really does talk about how transformative Christ is in our lives. Michael's essay leaves the impression that Paul is to Jesus what Joel Osteen is to the church today. Michael doesn't say that, he just leaves the impression.

Look, I agree with everything Michael has to say in the piece, I just wish he could have found a way to say it without being quite so dismissive of the epistles. They are after all, scripture too. Definitely recommended reading.


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