2003-10-28 - Inattention to Religion -- Wonderful
Deuteronomy 7:9, "Know therefore that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments."
I was reading this old article and the above topic was the title. The title was interesting. Coming from a conservative publication (very conservative), I was shocked by the title. I am OK with what was said in it for the most part, but I had to read it, and several times at that. How can inattention to religion be wonderful? If I was to write it I would say, inattention to religion is wonderful because religion is not the issue. Inattention to religion, in general, is a good thing. Religion is not the issue. I could worship a tree, or a watermelon, or nothing, and it is still religion. So inattention to religion is wonderful. It is never religion that defines true worship, it is Jesus Christ. It is Christ alone. I can worship a roll of tape and I suppose that is religion, but what is true faith that matters? Faith that matters is faith in Christ, and His atonement for our sin.
So, I think this guy took the wrong approach, but he had an interesting take on it that took me by surprise towards the end of the article. So I wish to share this quote with you from the end of the article. Here it is...
"Yet succeeding generations tread in the footsteps of those who have gone before them; one after another falls into the burning lake, and the living take no warning! What strange infatuation! Wonderful! Wonderful!! We may cease to wonder at any thing other. And the world is full of wonders! Every man who is inattentive to religion, indifferent and careless, is a wonder to God, angels, and men -- AND TO DEVILS TOO! He is a wonder to three worlds, heaven, earth, and hell! And he will hearafter be a wonder to himself!"
I have quoted him exactly as he wrote it almost 200 years ago. He is right on. I have been all over the world and it is a world full of wonders. As he said, none of that matters. If we are careless in our resting in Christ, if we are indifferent, well, my friends we are wonder (I still don't think that makes us wonderful). I think this is author is using the term wonderful in a way we would not use it today, but that happens with time. Language changes, such is life. At USC they now offer a credit course on slang.
I would say that it is a wonder that someone who has the chance to experience the grace, mercy, and wonder of Christ is a wonder in him/her self if he/she walks away from that grace and mercy. We have all fallen, we know it. To not rest in a mercy and forgiveness provided is insanity.I still have an issue with inattention to religion being wonderful. But it must be religion that is based in forgiveness and that forgiveness is only found in Christ. If that is your religion, your hopes will be fulfilled. If you are worshiping a toilet, I am thinking you will be let down.
Soli Deo Gloria,