“Life is a Job”

Posted: July 26, 2012 by boydmonster in Apologetics and Evangelism
Tags: , ,

Thanks to Tom Webb for passing this on!

Fortunately, Father Guido has it wrong here.  I understand that this is a comic routine, but the truth is most people view life in this way.  We see our good deeds and our bad deeds sort of weighing up against one another.  Most of us hope that we’ll be found righteous in the balance.  If we’re not sure, we might comfort ourselves with an idea like reincarnation (remember, most nuns are former mafiosos) in the hopes that somewhere down the line we might be able to balance the accounts.  While this seems more gracious than the classic Christian teaching of God’s judgment for sin, it isn’t.  Take for example, the English football manager who was fired for stating that disabled people were making up for bad deeds done in past lives.  While many Hindu believers reject this idea, suffering people often wonder what they have done to deserve their pain, whether in this life or one past.  The cruelty of this karmic system is that all suffering eventually leads to guilt.  “What did I do?”

On the other hand, more western religious people have imagined the weighing of the scales more immediately.  After you die, everything is added up and hopefully you have enough to get in to heaven.  Inevitably, this leads to the sort of casuistry that was common amongst the Pharisees as we heap greater penalties on the sins we don’t personally struggle with (like the adulterous woman’s accusers in John 8), while we blame others (for example, those in Jesus’ day who blamed the woman for a man’s lust, the reason why Jesus says “If a man looks at a woman with lust in his eyes He’s already committed adultery in his heart,” (Matthe 5:28) or we lessen the penalties for the sins we do struggle with (that’s probably like 25 or 35 cents).

According to Paul, this thinking is only half right.  Romans 6:23 says “The wages of sin is death….”  Yes, sin is a job and its wages aren’t reincarnation or good deeds that balance or cancel out, but its wages are death.  Since sin is doing our own will rather than God’s, by its very nature it takes us away from the one who is our life.  Sin isn’t a great ledger that accrues death, but it is a powerful force that seperates us from God.  When we choose our will over God’s we are as sure to be seperated from God as a worker is sure to get his wages.

However, Paul goes on to say that “the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.”  God’s solution to our sin problem is not an eternal karmic wheel where we have to do it over til we get it right, rather, God has taken on flesh and received the wages of our sin for us so that He could give us eternal life.  This eternal life isn’t earned.  It isn’t a reward for our good deeds canceling out our bad.  It is a gift freely given by Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection canceling out all that we have done.  The fruit of Christ’s death can never be taken away.  It is ours forever and ever.

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