The title was fashioned to provoke discussion. This is not to say that the content will not reflect the headline but I thought it best to preface the article before I continued. Neither is it a berating of Christianity but my perspective of (some) Christians.
We have ruined sex.
For many Christians sex is perceived as something vile and dirty. Married Christians pretend to not be having it and young Christians pretend to not think about it since it’s the ultimate antithesis in a Christian’s walk. Right? Wrong! Just because the world has turned sex into something beastly and animalistic doesn’t mean that we can’t preserve its magnificence. It is supposed to be glorious and beautiful all within the context of marriage, meaning the act itself is not sinful.We have placed sex in a place that the Bible doesn’t necessarily place it in. How long will we continue to sidestep the sensuality contained with the book of Solomon ?
Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest is my beloved among the young men. I delight to sit in his shade, and his fruit is sweet to my taste. [Book Solomon 2:3]
It is not wise to detract the beauty of making love and replace it with shame and guilt in a place where shame and guilt shouldn’t existence. Sex (within marriage) is a beautiful gift from God. Let’s stop treating it as a curse sent from the Devil.
We have ruined judgement.
“Only God can judge me” is probably the most overstated statement within the Christiandom. I understand the premise. Jesus did say ,
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way judge others, you will judged and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you “.[Matthew 7:1]
So I sympathise with the premise. However, rebuke is different from judgement.
In Galatians 2:11, Paul rebukes Peter for separating himself from the gentiles when in the midst of company but eating with them when nobody was around to “judge”.
“ When Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. 12 For before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group. 13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray. 14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?
I doubt Peter turned around and said “only God can judge” . There are countless scriptures that support rebuke.
Hebrews 3:13 is another,
“But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today,’ that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin”
James 5:19 suggests,
My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
Let’s move away from the defensive and into the corrective but in love.
We have ruined courtship.
I’m concerned with the way we utilise and apply the term “courtship”. Our misuse stems from the fact that there doesn’t seem to exist a coherent definition. I’ve heard it defined as an alternative to dating. I’m also aware that in some circles it is the prelude to marriage. I know where I would place the term on a scale but I’m not here to argue on its true meaning (I’ll save that for another time when I’m better versed in its origins and functions ) , however I must speak on the implications that follow a flawed discourse on courtship. Its overuse and misapplication breeds confusion and for what? So that some individuals can carry with them a sense of pride because they are “courting” as opposed to dating? The former is packaged as God’s will for you and the latter perpetuated as something that goes against the divine order, when the truth is both are words that have been given meaning through human interaction. It’s the intention behind the term that matter and not the term itself but when we are so distracted by what to call it, how will we catch that revelation?
We have ruined marriage.
We place marriage on a pedestal forgetting that Jesus himself was single.
Jesus was single.
Jesus was single.
Jesus was SINGLE.
Marriage is a beautiful thing because of the symbolism attached to it. “Husband’s love your wife, the way Christ loves the Church.” The intimacy between Christ and the church is played out in the interaction between a husband and a wife, as seen in this scripture,
“for the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour”.
Marriage between the husband and wife is the divine order. We are all too familiar with the concept of a man leaving his family and cleaving to his wife but again I must reiterate that Jesus was single. Marriage is not the be-all and end-all to your existence; it is not the only way to demonstrate God’s glory. If it were the case then Paul’s crown of glory would have been withheld. I’m pained by the myth that there are blessings attached to marriage. There are blessings attached to obedience and there are blessings attached to being found in the Lord but to say that there are blessings wholly exclusive to marriage isn’t biblical. We make a mockery of our existence when we position marriage as the pinnacle of it. The pinnacles of our existence are our faith, our Christ and his cross. The pressure to get married is definitely excessive and compels the pressured parties to make premature decisions.
We have ruined sin.
We have sugar coated it. We have tantalised it. We have and still are tolerating it. We haven’t rebuked it as aggressively as we ought to.
We have ruined grace.
Paul was on to something when he said,
“What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3” [Roman 6:1]
The implication in this statement is that grace ought to be dispensed properly. It is not your free pass or your crutch. it is God’s gift to mankind. It is a demonstration of his affection for us. It is not the morning after pill to your coitus. Yet, we treat it as such. We kick grace around (I kick it around) as though it were something deserving of abuse, when in actual fact it should be treasured. Grace will not save you when you get to the pearly white gates and the son of man turns to you saying, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’
For the love of grace, let’s stop ruining grace.
This might not be an exhaustive list but it is definitely an important one. I anticipate that many Christians have ruined the things listed or know someone who has ruined at least one of the things listed, so it is definitely an important discourse to have.
Before I bid you adieu, I wanted to add that I am back with a vengeance now. In other words keep your eyes peeled for more articles.
Love Cris x
P.S I have ruined just about everything on this list at one point in my life, so you are definitely not alone.
P.S.S Welcome to my new site.