aefenglommung (aefenglommung) wrote,

Doing it right

If you're doing it right, there are times when the preaching of the Gospel will scandalize all the respectable people. The Good News is that all sins -- every sin -- is forgiven. People keep wanting to qualify that, to pick and choose among sins, to rank them in order to justify themselves (or refuse to justify others).

On the other hand, if you're doing it right, there are also times when the preaching of the Gospel will offend just about all your best supporters. For in the kingdom of heaven, every sin may be forgiven, but no sin will be tolerated. God intends to make us perfect, as he is perfect, and he doesn't care how much that costs him -- or us.

In the meantime, which is where life is actually lived, that means that sometimes we are offering mercy and sometimes we are pronouncing judgment, depending on the need of the moment. But mercy is not permission to sin, and judgment on sin is not a rejection of the sinner. To do it right, you have to mean both at the same time, and at their most extreme. That seems like a contradiction, but it's not -- it's merely an impossibility, like producing figs out of season, which impossibilities we are commanded to proclaim. And demonstrate.

Anything less is not the Gospel, and anyone who preaches another "gospel" is condemned. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preached to you, let him be accursed (Galatians 1:8).

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