Moralism is the default mode for preachers. It’s second nature. But it misinforms the congregation. Why do it then? Maybe it tells them what they really want to hear, which is that they can please God through moral improvement. But moralising cannot save. We must do better than this if we are to escape the rebuke of Christ: “If you believed Moses, you would believe me”
Do you have a hunger for something more in life? Is there something deep inside of you that never seems to be satisfied? Are you confused? Are you unable to find a path or purpose in life? Does it seem like someone has turned out the lights and you cannot find the switch? Do you ever feel like you are locked out of life? Have you tried many doors only to find that what is behind them is empty and meaningless? Are you looking for an entrance into a fulfilling life?
This has been the curse of Adam’s sons— in every generation and in all parts of the earth. The calamity of evil which then descended upon the world continues to this day. Despite how sophisticated mankind believes to have arrived, the age-old curse of slavery to sin and their judgement to death can never be wiped clean on their own merits. Thus Adam and Eve’s children are equally involved in the sentence of the pain of childbirth, the curse on the ground, the obligation to live by toil and sweat, the decay and death of the body.
Jesus is identified as God’s Son in a special way that indicates his eternal, divine nature. In the early church, the confession that Jesus Christ was fully divine was a critical aspect of the Christian faith.
Believers have even now been incorporated into the consummation of their union with Christ in the eschaton: “future glory . . . will be nothing other than the continued unfolding of the riches of our union with Christ.”
Christ fulfills the moral aspects of the law. We depend on Christ’s morality alone as the basis for our acceptance before God. Yet, we must also conform ourselves to Christ’s image and example, seeking to live as morally as he did during his earthly ministry, and as he continues to do in heaven.
We can fall into an equally dangerous error of thinking that all we need in order to walk with the Lord is a spirit – ‘forget about the intellect’, they say, ‘it only creates prob- lems’. ‘Big mind, big problems; little mind, little problems; no mind, no problems!’ seems to be the attitude. Anti- intellectualism of this kind can be truly disastrous.