What do gay activists, King Saul, King David, Job and probably you and I have in common?
Some things that I hope you and I can agree upon: 1. Passover and the accompanying foot washing ceremony should teach us about humility. 2. In addition, the death of Jesus Christ for our sins should point out that we are undeserving of any consideration whatsoever, let alone to become eternal children of God. Finally, we cannot repair the “old man”. Our entire character and personality must be changed into something new and created by our Maker.
Indiana “Religious Objection” Law and Missing the Point
I’ve kept mostly silent on this, as I think we all realize that Jesus prophesied that the end times would be like the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. However, there certainly are some aspects of the contrived controversy that are being missed, IMO.
Point blank, if I were to use an analogy, what’s the difference between gay activists intentionally going into a known to be Christian business and trying to force them to do something against their consciences and members of the KKK going into a black owned bakery and trying to force them to create burning cross cookies for their upcoming KKK rally? Essentially, not a thing!
Anyone who says otherwise is seriously deceived and filled with lies.
However, something that really gets glossed over is the arrogance of entitlement that comes with such actions. We live in an entitlement society! “It feels good, so it must be good, and therefore I deserve it.”
There is something much more subtle at work, however. Notice how the left responded? Notice further the right’s response to the left’s response?
Soon after Pence signed the bill, Salesforce.com founder and CEO Marc Benioff announced on Twitter that he was canceling all programs that require its customers or employees “to travel to Indiana to face discrimination.”
~ “Indiana religious objections bill signed as dispute swirls“
In Washington, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Indiana officials appeared to be in “damage-control mode” following the uproar over the law.
~ “Indiana governor wants to clarify religious-objections law; Arkansas passes similar bill“
It is about as subtle as a sledgehammer that both sides are catering to those with power, that is, those with dollars. I’ve even heard people argue why turn away a gay couple wanting a wedding cake, since it is “business”. It does not take a huge imagination to see where the overt idolatry is.
In Money We Trust.
Leaven As Pride
4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
~ 1Co 13:4
Paul often used leaven to picture not only sin but specifically pride. In the above verse, he contrasts godly love, which is unselfish, with arrogance, the combination of selfishness and pride. Arrogance is actually a fitting synonym for a sense of entitlement, IMO.
Some “gay Christians”, as though there were such a thing, like to say Sodom was destroyed because of selfishness and pride. In their argument, Sodom was being inhospitable to the two strangers. They point to other verses that point out the pride of Sodom.
However, that is missing the point. Sure, Sodom was proud. However, their pride enveloped the sense of entitlement they had. They proudly believed they were entitled not only to an abhorrent lifestyle, and let’s not pull punches on what an “abomination” is, but they even allowed themselves to believe it was OK to force others to accept and even participate in it.
IOW, it was only one step beyond forcing a Christian bakery to participate in an ungodly celebration by baking a wedding cake for confrontational gay activists who knew precisely that was a company owned by Christians before walking through the door.
The argument was not, is not and never has been about not serving gay couples. It is entirely about forcing someone to do something that is actively supporting sin.
It is a sense of entitlement.
King Saul, King David, Job
So, what does this have to do with several characters of the Old Testament? Frankly, when you look at the failings of Job, Saul and David, you see the allowance of an attitude of “I’m entitled”, and it should be a warning for us.
To say King Saul believed he was entitled should be stating the obvious. He was king! What he said goes! Or, at least it did to the point until righteous and sane men balked at the audacity of his ideas. His own army refused to kill the priests that David visited when running from Saul, and so he turned to an Edomite, a foreigner, to do his dirty work (1Sa 22:17-19).
Perhaps it was King Saul’s arrogance and sense of entitlement that led to God causing David to be on the run for roughly 20 years (depending upon which age you believe he was anointed king). It probably was to teach David not only total dependence upon God but humility.
And yet, did not David fall to the same sin? He saw Bathsheba, he lusted after her, and he felt he was entitled to not only another man’s wife but to kill another in order to cover it up.
Many, far too many, say Job was “secretly proud”, which is a direct contradiction of God’s word.
1 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.
8 And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
~ Job 1:1, 8
However, Job and his three friends all had difficulty pinpointing any blame within Job at all. They were frustrated by their theological views of fairness. If you do good, God will reward you. If you do wrong, God will punish you. It all assumes a fair world, of course, and it likewise assumes that there isn’t a greater good being served by people suffering because of problems they themselves did not commit.
That’s a long way of saying Job felt entitled to blessings, BTW.
Of course, in the real world the innocent suffer and the righteous are persecuted. In the end, all of us have sinned at least once and are worthy of the death penalty. So, under these circumstances, what are we really entitled to?
Passover and Foot Washing
I find it fascinating that the death of our Savior is tied intimately in with the ceremony of foot washing. After all, He not only washed our feet but washed away our sins!
This is why the idea that Christ did not exist before His birth is so repugnant. Jesus made Himself the lowest of the low (Php 2:8) in order to save the lowest of the low.
If the bread and the wine don’t remind us that we are not entitled, then the foot washing certainly should! The very ceremony seems odd to outsiders, and the very act itself requires at least the humility to follow the commandment. In all cultures, the feet are the lowest parts of the body, symbolically as well as physically, and in ancient Jewish culture only the lowest slave carried out the task.
Passover is an odd time as feasts go, as the Sabbath Thoughts article “The Privilege of Footwashing” points out.
Without the footwashing ceremony, the Passover service would require almost no interaction with our fellow Church members. It would be an intensely private experience—a whole congregation in the same room, eating the bread in silence, drinking the wine in silence, singing a hymn and then quietly walking out.
When I think of all of the splits and fractures within what should be a unified body, I cannot help but think that most of it is due to people thinking they do not need one another. They actually believe that they are entitled to go it alone, if not outright entitled in some other way.
When we eat the unleavened bread, are we really taking in the mind of Christ?
I made some unleavened bread by hand today. I like doing it at least once during the Days of Unleavened Bread. I reflect that there are still air bubbles when it is done, in spite of no leavening in the mixture. That is because yeast naturally rests upon flour, even as our carnal natures are naturally sinful.
I hope everyone thinks upon this during these days. If not, might I suggest you take up baking at least once per year?
True, we are supposed to put leavening out of our lives, but it is impossible! We are given a huge and impossible task to perform.
However, God is the master of doing the impossible. It was “impossible” for Israel to be freed from Egypt. It was “impossible” to cross the Red Sea. It was “impossible” to wander around for 40 years and not even have worn shoes.
Most of all, it is “impossible” to take sinful mortal creatures and make them perfect everlasting children of the Most High God.
But, it requires we understand that we are not entitled to it.