The Responsibility of Freedom in Christ? - The Epistles
Some people think that anytime a Christian applies the Scripture to life and points out right and wrong, good and bad, do and don't do, then. (Point 11) As with all freedoms, limits on religious freedom, the letter relationship between Church and state; form conscience according to. Second, the Bible is quite clear that we are not to use freedom for personal use. Paul said in Galatians , “For freedom Christ has set us free.
We are, of course, as Christians familiar with the original statement from which the above statement was burrowed: We who were slaves of sin, and hence not free at all, becomes slaves of Christ, and hence truly free, By Christian conversion we move deeper into the warp and woof of the nature of the created universe, and so we move more and more within the constraints of that universe as new creatures, children of God, and members of the household of faith.
Before Christian conversion we were not free to be responsible; after conversion we are responsible as an expression of our freedom. We understand the meaning and the power of Jesus' words, when he said, "For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. There are possibilities, therefore, of opening new opportunities through new relationships as we consider the exchange of freedom and responsibility. Responsibility vs Compulsion The reader may by this time be increasingly restless: Opportunities for responsibility have been largely taken over by the demands of compulsion.
- We Are Currently Caught Up in the Turmoil of the Grand Civilization Experiment
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- Charles Stanley
Figure 4 expresses this dimension of our actual situation. Transitions from state A to states B and C involve the loss of the same amount of freedom, but the transition to state B brings a tradeoff of freedom for responsibility due to choice, whereas the transition to state C yields no responsibility since the transition was made by compulsion.
We can give up freedom in two ways: There is an axis of compulsion that runs orthogonal to both freedom and responsibility; we can lose our freedom and gain nothing in responsibility if our actions are compelled by fear of punishment or loss.
We must realize at once that compulsion is not responsibility either unenforced or enforced ; a large portion of the world today speaks glibly of social responsibility, but what they really mean is social compulsion. They may indicate that such compulsion is only a temporary necessity, on the way to true responsibility, but historical examples of getting past this step are hardly common.
We have for this case again some biblical analogies. When we restrict our freedoms solely out of fear of the law, we lose both freedom and responsibility. So Paul speaks of the law: So that the law was our custodian schoolmaster, KJV until Christ came, that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a custodian; for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
The same issues constantly arise again; every resort to legalism rather than to responsible discipleship is an attempt to substitute compulsion for responsibility. Such a substitution seems quite appealing: Note that this framework avoids extremes: If we examine the structure of our social life today, we quickly find that to an extreme degree compulsion has been substituted for responsibility.
The best of motives, e.
So we see a desire to strengthen the power to act resulting in the transfer of power from local to federal levels, a desire to insure industrial safety resulting in the sometime excesses of OSHA, a desire to give financial aid to the poor resulting in the welfare system, a desire to insure responsible accounting of public funds resulting in roadblocks of red tape that paralyze progress, a desire for tax relief California's Proposition 13, for example resulting in an effective transfer of funds from the community to the federal government, a desire for fair practices in employment resulting in such a conglomeration of requirements that unfairness is as likely to be promoted as fairness, and a desire to eliminate discrimination resulting in an absolutization of those extraneous factors that perpetuate the environment for discrimination.
The justification for this process goes something like this. If human beings were intrinsically altruistic and unselfish, then one could make a case for removing compulsion in order that responsible living might be able to express itself. One could argue that the very existence of compulsion makes responsible living impossible.
I had a discussion with distinguished faculty in the commencement line at the time of Proposition 13 in California. They were certain that if real estate taxes were lowered, the outpouring of voluntary giving would more than make op for it to continue all worthwhile and needed services.
I do not think there is more than a token of empirical evidence to back up that hope since then. But we must also keep in mind the immensity of the task.
Assuming that we believe that my type of job is worthwhile, could we rely on the altruism, vision and generosity of human beings to voluntarily maintain such support? In this framework, taxation becomes a necessary evil in a complex and sinful world.
One may argue with the libertarians that taxation for such purposes is an improper activity of the state, and should be left to voluntary actions of the individual citizens; but it is highly unlikely that enough citizens would sacrifice voluntarily to meet the need if they were not forced to. As usual the rich would make out all right, and the poor would suffer even more. These social circumstances might have given birth to the problem of homosexuality.
The cause of it is exactly as our spiritual search has found.
Freedom and Responsibility: Not a Duplicitous Relationship — Bill Henard
The opposite also occurs, where someone who was always a man becomes a woman. People in this age do these things. With this regard, the secrets of the soul have not been made clear yet. They had four hands, and four legs, and they were a mixture of both male and female.Charles Matthewes: Freedom and Responsibility for Christian Citizens
One day god split them, and ever since they have been drawn to each another. Or as a spiritual problem, is it that people are a mix of both male and female? The spiritual background behind a situation in which, although he is a man, he is attracted to men, and although she is a woman, she is attracted to women, could possibly be due to the gender of a person in this life having been reversed from what it was physically in previous lives.
That must feel strange, and many people walk the Earth with that problem. How do you make the separation between heaven and hell? God separated Eve from Adam, thus creating man and woman. Afterwards, some people thought that God had made humans when He kneaded clay to create their bodies, and blew souls into them. If the cycle of reincarnation does not enter into this concept, then the idea is, even in modern times, that new types of people are endlessly created, and men and women have been created separately.
In conclusion, those people, who wish to live as homosexuals, to some extent, even if viewed from standpoint whether they could bear some positive thing in his or her life and turn out to be the betterment of the soul, have been as a result nothing more than examples of depravity and moral decay.
If we look at it from our experiences, then it appears that so many people, who did indulge in homosexuality, were already headed in the direction of moral decay and depravity.
What is Christian freedom?
Of course, a child cannot be created from homosexual activity, but a child with the genes of just one person can now be created.
Our values have really been shaken in this age when medical progress has made it possible for even a same-sex marriage to raise children now. We are entering into a realm in which we have no experience, a realm in which even the monks and nuns in the past will also lack experience.
In the end, however, as I have also preached elsewhere, whether the tree is good or bad, we must judge it by looking at the fruit it bears. Since the time of Peter, those people, who had guilty feelings towards women, have spoken too much about marriage, and hardened the system.
The Responsibility of Freedom in Christ?
Just now I said that it depends on the fruit. And as we know, we can sense that something feels bad about homosexuality, and it appears as something that is depraved and corrupt. I believe that has historically been the case. However, the numbers of people are rising that have tasted misfortune through heterosexual, traditional marriage, not homosexual relationships.
The point is that just as we should judge the good and bad fruits of a homosexual marriage, now we should judge the good and bad fruits of heterosexual marriage, too.
Therefore, if we hermeneutically incorporate homosexuality into Christianity, then we must demand that there be no distinction between male and female in the concept of loving our neighbors. Am I for or against same-sex marriage, right? Go ahead, and decide for yourself. But there is responsibility that comes with the results of what you decide. But if it leads to overall moral decay, then it will also transform into evil.
Of course, I think that the peaceful expansions of normal, heterosexual relationships are best, but today, the fact is that many big problems have been wrapped into the traditional notions of marriage, and everything depends on whether we can overcome them. If homosexuality and same-sex marriage lead to the happiness of the individual and the development of society, then to some extent they should be affirmed; but if they cause the inflation of desire and self-interest, they cannot be accepted limitlessly.
Furthermore, if we consider the fact that God Buddhaby dividing men and women and having them love each other, created a mechanism for the nurturing of offspring, it is to be feared that homosexuality and same-sex marriage could pose a threat to the survival of the nation if they were to become the norm. Then he handled the practical concern of eating meat that had been sacrificed to idols.
True, Paul says; Christians have a great deal of freedom in Christ. However, not everything is beneficial or constructive. Our freedom in Christ must be balanced by a desire to build up and benefit others. When deciding how to exercise our Christian freedom, we ought to seek the good of others before our own good. In Judaism, restrictions were placed on purchasing meats in the market. Jews could only buy and eat kosher meats.
Paul said believers were free in Christ to buy and eat any meat 1 Corinthians However, if the issue of meat sacrificed to idols came up, believers were to follow a higher law. Love is what limits Christian freedom. Christians are free to eat whatever they are served without questions of conscience 1 Corinthians But, if someone brings up that the meat has been offered to an idol, it is better not to eat it for the sake of the person who raised the issue of conscience verse In the passage, Paul again brings up the issue of eating meat sacrificed to idols and also observing certain holy days.
Some of the believers felt freedom in Christ in these areas while others did not.