Thursday, 21 September 2017
Be Perfect! - You Who Consider Your-selves To Be Spiritual/Christian...
It is annoying when "Christians" excuse them-selves by saying "the church is made up of imperfect people". This is in response to any criticism about the hypocrisy of "Christians". The quotations are used to stress the over-use or misuse of the term "Christian". So what did Christ, the founder of this religion say on the subject of lame excuses and imperfection?
In perhaps the most radical part of the gospels, the beatitudes, Jesus stresses the ethical and moral demands of the gospel. He goes far beyond the Jewish Law, though he does not invalidate it, to stress the righteousness and love of those who want to follow him. Christ condemns the religious leaders [why don't "Christians"/others do this today? Rather, they follow them without question - the very thing Christ condemned]. Demanding a righteousness greater than the leaders, Jesus called for a total sacrificing of the ego - the self - to give - to love the other.
As the meme says, love, not retaliation must dominate the spiritual person's life. But it's so hard! Did Christ say, "oh it's okay, you're not perfect...don't worry about it"? No! Rather he said "Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect". [Mt. 5:48 NIV]. No excuses. No whining. No choice.
This is the gospel. It is not some lame prayer etc. It is living - be-ing right-eous. Reading the bible, going to church/temple etc. are not righteous acts, nor do they necessarily "bring about" righteousness. It is about love. It is love. The Jews didn't see a separation between "spiritual" and everyday life. We need to be "holy" in all we do. We need to love our neighbours in all we do. That includes big issues like driving, flying, having two homes, polluting, trying to make society equal [eg. increase taxes on rich/corporations], getting involved in community/political actions, etc. And, of course, our righteous acts need to take into account the nonhuman population, the air, land, water...and our impact on "them".
We need to feel un-comfortable. We need to be perfect. It is work. It is necessary. It is love [a verb].