Friday, January 28, 2011
No Amiable Indifference
In our "politically correct" culture it's essential that no one is ever offended by anything you say. A person can live like the devil and flaunt their liberated lifestyle but woe to the one who is so rude as to point out that such living and flaunting might be sinful. Your duty is to make people feel good about whatever they determine is good. Leave them alone and they'll leave you alone. Every man must be able to do what is right in his own eyes.
Of course this is completely contrary to what Christ did. He loved and, therefore, He told the truth. The truth is often offensive; it's not always nice. Nevertheless, it's the backdrop for the Gospel―the good news―man is a mess and in Christ there is hope. The age of toleration cannot tolerate such a message. Dorothy Sayers said it well:
"I believe it to be a grave mistake to present Christianity as something charming and popular with no offense in it. Seeing that Christ went about the world giving the most violent offense to all kinds of people it would seem absurd to expect that the doctrine of His Person can be so presented as to offend nobody. We cannot blink the fact that gentle Jesus meek and mild was so stiff in His opinions and so inflammatory in His language that He was thrown out of church, stoned, hunted from place to place, and finally gibbeted as a firebrand and a public danger. Whatever His peace was, it was not the peace of an amiable indifference; and He said in so many words that what He brought with Him was fire and sword. That being so, nobody need be too much surprised or disconcerted at finding that a determined preaching of Christian dogma may sometimes result in a few angry letters of protest or a difference of opinion on the parish council."
[Creed or Chaos, pp.41-42]