‘To BE or not To Be’

Shakespeare“To be, or not to be that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune…”

Unlike the above words from Shakespeare’s Hamlet’s soliloquy — in which the individual bemoans his lot — suffering the lot of the ‘outrageous fortunes’ that befall mankind —living an unexamined fruitless — even pointless existence — the author of Psalm 27 afirms his trust in the God of the Judeo/Christian Scriptures:

 “The Lord is my light and my salvation –
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life –
of whom shall I be afraid?”

Psalm 27V1 (Latin:Domninus Illuminatio Mea) is the motto of Oxford University.

Oxfors University Motto

Continue reading ‘To BE or not To Be’

I’m OK To Die…

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I was OK to die,wasn’t I…

 

In his book ‘The Divine Conspiracy’ [1] the late Dallas Willard says that if you ask anyone from the seventy four percent of Americans who say that they have made a commitment to Jesus Christ, what the Christian gospel is, you will probably be told that Jesus died to pay for our sins, and that if we believe he did this, we will go to heaven when we die.

Willard states that justification has taken the place of regeneration—as he puts it: “Being let off the divine hook replaces possession of the divine life from above.” It’s one thing receiving forgiveness but quite another  giving your life to Christ and taking on his mantle and taking the Holy Spirit’s direction for your life [2].

In their book ‘ How Now Shall We Live’[3] Colson and Pearcey  quote Bruno Betteleheim who said that, Children’s moral choices are based not on abstract standards of right and wrong but on the people they admire and want to emulate. The question for the child is not, ‘Do I want to be good?’ Bettelheim writes, ‘ but who do I want to be like?’  Is it possible that the rugged individualism of the pioneer spirit of cultural mores—the ‘I did it my way’ mentality has been a less than helpful model? The Biblical Narrative strongly recommends Jesus Christ as a role model.It may well be the case that much of Evangelicalism has been overly concerned with  justification without the personal sacrifice that following Christ  demands, or the response that such grace deserves. Grace though is undeserved yet ‘grace’ that shows no sign of reciprocation may well be ‘in the eye of the beholder’. It could be argued that twentieth century Evangelicalism was too concerned with being: pro profit [at any cost], pro-life, anti gay—anti anything that appears to be unbiblical. It may though be a gross caricature of American and European Evangelicalism to make such, as far we are aware, unsubstantiated value judgments or ‘over realised’ caricatures. Continue reading I’m OK To Die…