I have often wondered if “we” have reduced Christianity to luke warm pablum. In other words, the early church was filled with martyrs. People joined their ranks knowing there was a good chance that such a decision would land them in jail or in the coliseum. Not only was the “commitment level” recklessly high, there was a sense of adventure in those “Acts of the Apostles/Holy Spirit” days. Now we are apparently so desperate for a crowd or an offering that anyone who’s so bold as to agree that Jesus is God or that the Bible is reliable is made a deacon. Or so it seems. Are we fulfilling our Kingdom commission by taking this “whosoever will” approach? Are we doing our “converts” any favors by acting this way towards them? Maybe in our efforts to be accepting we’ve done people more harm than good… Oh it’s not that we don’t have criteria, but that our criteria are so unbiblical and superficial that even when we do enforce some sort of expectations on people it ultimately is really not much more than a demand that they be like us, which is sad because we’re all supposedly being conformed to the image of God’s Son.
In this vein, I really enjoyed this thought-provoking post from Ben Meyer:
The day my mother turned seventeen, she went to the local Canberra police station to apply for her driver’s license. When she walked through the door in a short summer dress with a ribbon in her hair, the driving instructor looked up with interest. When she flashed him a smile and said she would like to take the driving test, he thought she was very pretty. When she batted her long black eyelashes and said it was her birthday, he beamed at her and fumbled madly for his camera, then took her photo and, without further ado, issued her with a shiny new plastic card – her Australian driver’s license. It was, he told her with a confidential wink, a birthday present.
And so, without so much as turning a key or operating a windscreen wiper, my mother was authorised to pilot one of the most dangerous high-speed weapons ever devised by the dark mind of man: the automobile. (you can read the rest of it here)