Blog Samples: Jesus

Posted 04 Feb 2008 in Blogs, coffee, Jesus, Scripture, Social Justice, Spirituality

Thanks to Ben for sharing this post on google reader. Its from Jesus the radical pastor, John W. Frye’s blog. Reading this I felt convicted as I sipped on my Morning Blend Starbucks coffee. I resonate with John here, I don’t think Jesus would like me much, nor I Him. Much has been given me, what am I doing with it?

Would the Radical Jesus Like You?
“In the Gospels I usually identify with all the people Jesus serves. I think that he both liked and loved them. But if I am honest, I should see myself in those groups that didn’t like Jesus and I don’t think he liked them very much, either.”

Now playing: Ray LaMontagne – Be Here Now
via FoxyTunes


  1. josh w

    I apologize that this may come off as me being negative/cynical, but that’s not the purpose. I appreciate the reflection on wealth and charity.

    I would like, however, to know the magical numbers that will tell me what it is morally okay for me to spend on different things. Am I resigned to be a Wal-Mart shopper and Folger’s drinker for the rest of my life as a good Christian?

    What about the sweatshop/fair trade/destruction of local business issues? Etc. But I guess those aren’t the main issues for me.

    I suppose I have encountered too often the slippery slope that leads to despising human excellence and the good things of the earth when the price tag is too high. Moderate enjoyment of luxuries can co-exist with generosity.

    So, may the reflection on wealth confirm our resolution to give alms, to give back to God first from what is best, but not lead us to forsake the good gifts of the Lord.

  2. nick

    Josh: You’ve not come off as negative/cynical, rather I think you’ve caught the issue by the pants.

    I confess I’m not terribly familiar with Frye and his thoughts – but I can say this. I’m not sure the message of his post, nor my reflection on it, was to forsake all and be a Wal-Mart shopper and Folger’s drinker.

    The celebration of excellence and the good things God has given us is an important pursuit and act of worship to our creator. Dare I say though, this pursuit must not take a higher value than the act of worship through caring for the poor, the needy, the over looked.

    I might go as far as saying, we as American Christians are predisposed to hold the former above the latter and I confess I do so often.

    I’d rather error on the side of more charity than risk fueling my self-centeredness by slipping on the slick slope of celebrating the good things.

    Good thoughts Brother. Indeed let our reflection on wealth move us to deeper charity but not lead us to forsake the good gifts of our Lord.

  3. Ben

    I don’t think there’s a magic number, but I can immediately turn to my conscience for at least some guidance. Personally, I think it’s fair to say that, if judged by my actions, I care very little about those in need.

    I can look first at my actions toward others and find my charity lacking – then in light of that, when I look at the life I lead, it seems shameful what I will stretch and make concessions for.

    It is very easy in an affluent society to fall into keeping the norm. There are just certain things we are expected to put money into and certain things that show greater taste and greater status when we spend more (I’d be willing to put a little more money into good speakers for instance).

    My thought right now is that I should begin giving enough to settle my conscience and then worry about whether that’s enough.

  4. nick

    Ben: I agree, I don’t believe there to be a magic number. Having a magic number would give way to legalism about a matter you have so keenly pinned as a heart issue. My conscience is usually a good starting point in my examination of my heart.

    I know my conscience needs to be tested though. The religious system I find myself in, the convictions of others, the actions of others can all contribute to the state of my conscience. I want to give motivated by a love for those I’m giving too, not out of guilt from my perceived lack of religiosity.

    So let us not become Pharisee’s caught up in how much we give based on some number only to soothe our conscience into submission. Instead, let us give out of our poverty like the widow (Luke 21:1-4).

    I’m not totally convinced giving out of my guilt would be a horrible thing at this point though. I say that knowing that the state of my heart can be changed by my actions. Action can spur motivation for future action.

  5. Ben

    Great passage to reference, Nick. I agree. Our consciences can be warped and corrupted so that we feel too burdened or not burdened enough. I was thinking this as I was writing it, but “conscience” seemed like the quickest word to use.

    I mean to suggest that we should begin with giving – give out of love, give out of respect so that more people might have their basic needs met.

    As an accomplished procrastinator, I know that questions like “How much do I need to give?” and “What do I need to give up?” can just distract from an act of giving.

    So for myself, I need to start giving, get into the habit, and then work out the details.

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