Monday, 8 February 2010
"While the World is a beautiful place, I have seen enough of it to believe there is something very very wrong. As I grow older and better understand myself, I also realized that I am no better than the World around me.
In a world of radical evil in every direction, the only thing that can expunge that evil is blood atonement provided by an innocent.
We are fortunate in that God has chosen to expunge that evil by his own blood, in a horrible humiliating death upon the Cross.
Without the centrality of this Gospel, all Christianity is pietistic, and the pietist can pick his poison. The pietist can:
-buy an indulgence, attend a Latin daily Mass, and shop for every trinket Mother Angelica sells
-sell your car, cut off the electric, and grow a beard
-move to the desert, learn the Jesus prayer, and fast on raw vegetables
-Stop drinking and smoking, quit dancing, comb your hair like a helmet, and litter the countryside with Bible tracts thrown from your car window
-Focus on earthly justice for any of the oppressed nations or classes du jour
None of these practices are bad things, dependent upon ones individual circumstance (Except perhaps the littering). While I personally did not try them all, I always looked for something to do. However, none of these things will ever save us. Before my thick head finally got the Gospel, my experience with Christianity was a seesaw from enthusiasm/Pharisaic to depression/despair. Perhaps ironically, I first heard the Gospel in a way I could understand it from Lutherans; not Anglicans (Thank you Todd Wilken and Issues, etc. You changed my life forever)"
Read the whole reflection over at 'The River Thames Beach Party' by clicking on the post title. Have a look around while you're there, there is much of value for Lutherans in the classical Anglican tradition. Meantime, I have a widget linking to 'Issues Etc.', the Lutheran radio program from the US that was instrumental in the conversion of the author of the above words, in the right-hand column.
PS Thanks to the author, Richard, for kindly allowing me to post this excerpt from his longer reflection here at the old manse.