Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Whole New Category

" . . . neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything . . ."
-- from Galatians 5:6

Most people assume there are really two categories: good people and bad people. There are people who are trying and people who aren't. Most religions, including some identifying as Christian, operate according to these two categories. There are religious people and irreligious people.

There's a local cult group called the Twelve Tribes that teaches that in the afterlife, bad people go to hell, people in the Twelve Tribes go to heaven with Jesus, and good people who don't know Jesus occupy a renewed earth. (It's somewhat like the Jehovah's Witnesses that way.) They want to accommodate the two categories in their creation of three categories, because they know "good people" and "bad people" are the categories that "work."

But the Bible puts a red x on this categorization. All people are born condemned. We all know apathetic licentiousness won't rectify that. But the Scriptures tell us being good won't either. Good works don't get us in any more than doing "whatever" will. There is only one category for us.

We don't need a "good people" category. We need a whole new category. Christ supercedes our plausibility. The gospel is the other category, because only Christ counts for anything.


Dubbahdee said...

Capon would say (taking his cue from the Apostle Paul in his letter the the Romans) that the first category is dead people.

The comes Gospel, which turns dead people into resurrected people.

You are spot on. This categorical error is perhaps the most basic error arising out of religion. God save us from it.

Terry said...

Jared, thank you for your posts on Galatians. I preached through it last summer and was again captivated by the way Paul bases sanctification in the gospel. Your insights are wonderful, and I really appreciate your illustrations of text. Keep preaching the gospel!