Countering

A good family friend and I once parted ways when I felt he was becoming too conservative.  I argued a bit on a point, and he replied with something to the effect that if I had seen [insert various trends and labels] as he had, I would be conservative in the same ways he was.

That’s been 15 years or more.  I didn’t budge, and I don’t think he did much, either.  But that’s beside the point.

Often some of us feel the need to counter what we see around us.  If things are too liberal, we get conservative.  If they’re too conservative, we get progressive.  If they’re formal, we get casual, and if they’re contemporary and relatively baseless, we get postmodern and move in historical, liturgical directions.  All this seems natural to me.  I do a lot of this kind of thing right here on this blog.  I challenge some of the excesses and mistaken directions I see in Christendom.

So, I just read something I want to challenge.  It went under the title “Moments with Majesty,” and it came in an e-church bulletin I receive.

So many people are dominated by the fearsome image of a stern-countenanced Deity, wielding His scepter in judgment.  Yet the Scriptures reply in stark contrast: “Oh, give thanks to the God of Heaven! For His mercy endures forever” (Psalms 136:26).

In my circles, not many seem to be dominated by fearsome images of God these days.  Au contraire.  I think we rather need to see him as stern and jealous and demanding more than we do.  We ought to fear Him.  We get plenty of mercy and grace messages, and we need more about other aspects of God.  Expanding our concepts of God can lead to more apt worship.

I had to wonder if the source of that quotation were decades old.  It might well have been appropriate in the 50s or the 70s.  But not so much, where I walk today.  What do you think?  Is this “Moment with Majesty” something to accept, or something to counter?

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