Sunday, October 16, 2011

313. The Problems of a Performance-Based View of God

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The Bible is meant to be a source of "good news" for people, telling of the unconditional love of God and His acceptance of us in Christ. But to many people, the Bible has become a book that only tells them how far short they fall of living up to certain "expectations" that they feel they must live up to. Their view of God is based upon how they think He expects them to perform, and so they never really get to know the good news that He really does want them to know!

The church has come up with words such as "challenge" (as in, "this passage of scripture is 'challenging' me to perform a certain way') and "conviction (as in, "God is convicting me to live a certain way'), and because of this, the all too common view of God that the church presents is a performance-based view that puts people in fear and condemnation, rather than walking in the truth and knowing the grace and love of God, and an intimate relationship with Him that is not based on our performance.

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  1. Regarding being "challenged" perhaps we could look at it differently as in; provoking one-another unto good works and love?

  2. Indeed, I think that would be a great application of being "challenged," Rich. Stirring up one another, by the Spirit, towards love and good deeds.

    Sadly, I've seen many Christians "challenge" one another in a much more legalistic sense, and feeling "challenged" by God and others to perform because of a guilt- or condemned-conscience, as if they feel the need to perform well enough to stay right with God.

    There's definitely a big difference between those two types of 'works.'