In the past several weeks I’ve had a few different conversations with friends and family about raising kids in today’s world and the changing expectations regarding such topics as underage drinking or pre-marital sex or co-habitation - you know, the light topics facing our youth today.
Typically, these conversations at some point veer towards someone saying the religious norms of the past are no longer realistic and we must accept changes in society. While in those conversations, I’ve tended to agree on some points. But in thinking about “Follow” and the Lenten blog, it made me think about these shifting norms on a different, more biblical level. At the same time, I came across an article in Relevant Magazine by author and pastor David Platt that was asking “What Does it Mean to REALLY Follow Jesus?”
In his article, he has this description of Jesus that society has twisted to modern times:
“A nice, middle-class American Jesus. A Jesus who doesn’t mind materialism and who would never call us to give away everything we have. A Jesus who is fine with nominal devotion that does not infringe on our comforts, because, after all, He loves us just the way we are. A Jesus who wants us to be balanced, and who, for that matter, wants us to avoid danger altogether. A Jesus who brings us comfort and prosperity as we live out our Christian spin on the American Dream.”
Ouch…I’m not sure I can defend myself against that, as my very conversations mentioned earlier, though not directly addressed in the description above, could lend themselves right into this twisted modern definition (not to say there isn’t room for prayerful thought and biblical interpretation on such subjects). So I guess I am left to decide whether I choose to take an honest look at the Bible and follow the real Jesus and accept the social consequences of truly obeying Him or go with the “Middle-class American Jesus”.
I know which one is easier. But I also know which one is right. I’m guessing you know too. So what are we going to do about it?