Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Opus 2011-39, Civil, Not Servile

Much has been made of the president’s call for a return to civility.  Who can argue with a position that expects courtesy and calm?  No one.  But being civil is not the same as being servile.  Turning the other cheek does not mean be a door mat.

If you look at the Biblical definition of love, you start in I Corinthians 13.  Part of it reads like this:
(1 Corinthians 13:4-5 NASB)  Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,
So we see patience, kindness, humility, forgiveness, lack of jealousy and selfishness and the list goes on.  Powerful stuff. 

How does this play out in life?  Not the way many Christians would like to paint it.  This does not mean having no standards.  It does not excuse refusing to take a stand.  Let’s start with Jesus.  When Peter was telling Jesus to chill out and rethink His strategy, how did He respond?
(Matthew 16:23 KJV)  But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
Have you called anyone Satan lately for taking a stand that is wrong?  How about telling someone that they are offensive?  This is the same Jesus who tells us to turn the other cheek.  And read about Jesus at the various stages of His trial.  He allowed the sham to continue, after all it was His reason for being incarnated, but at times he refused to answer and then he gave of smart mouth answer of “What is truth.” 

How about Paul and Barnabas.  They were two early spiritual leaders in the church.  At one point they came to a disagreement on whether to give John Mark another chance.  Did they turn the other cheek?  No way:
(Acts 15:39 KJV)  And the contention was so sharp between them, that they departed asunder one from the other: and so Barnabas took Mark, and sailed unto Cyprus;
Or how about what Paul had to say about Peter?  Remember that Peter had been playing the hypocrite with the gentiles.  Did Paul go the extra mile?  No,
(Galatians 2:11 NASB)  But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned.
I could go on and on with these kind of examples but I hope you get the idea.  We are called to be salt and light, not pillows and Valium.

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.