Monday, June 27, 2011

The Chief End of Christian Liberty

[W]hat do you say when your son wants to smoke cigars? And you do not mind cigars, but the thought of your seventeen-year-old smoking one is troublesome, or comic, or both. And suppose he is asking in the name of Christian liberty? "Dad, we left that fundamentalist church five years ago!"

The end or purpose of Christian liberty is not to smoke or drink; liberty is given for the pursuit of holiness. Those who wave the banner of Christian liberty so that they might do whatever they might want to do have not understood the doctrine at all. The point is not to drink or smoke or dance according to our own whims, in the light of our own wisdom, but to do whatever we do before the Lord, with the increase of joy and holiness obvious to all. Our guide on how this is to be done is the Bible, and not our pet evangelical traditions. And this is why the mature may drink wine to the glory of God, and the same cannot be applied to young men who may be more concerned about looking cool than being holy . . .

Young men rarely agitate for their liberties while serving others in love. They are usually after their own jollies, tinglies, and whatnot.

-- Douglas Wilson, Future Men (Canon Press, 2001) 77, 79.

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