Monday, April 14, 2014

[Subversive Radio Podcast] The Power of the Gospel?

In response to a video clip where theologian Wayne Grudem attempts to discredit Greg Boyd's book, "The Myth of a Christian Nation", Keith illustrates the foolishness of taking the position that the Gospel is not enough to overcome evil in this world.

[Click link above to listen]



DanH (@HerfordDan) said...

I appreciate how you broke that down.

D. L. Webster said...

Several years ago I had a realization that at least here in the U.S., we Christians often confuse ourselves with our government. I think this is usually unintentional though a big problem nonetheless. I first recognized it in a scenario like this: "There are hungry people in the world; God wants us (as Christians) to feed the hungry, therefore we (as the U.S.) ought to send food/aid to these people." In other words, we make a jump from what we as Christians should do to thinking that's what our government should do. When this is our perspective, we get upset if the government isn't doing what we think we/it should and if the "right" leaders aren't elected. But I realized, we as Christians need to be doing these sorts of things no matter what our government chooses to do. On one hand it's good if the U.S. helps people, such as with AIDS in Africa. But a problem is that people then view the U.S. as their savior rather than Jesus, since these things are done in the name of the U.S.

In any case, I think Grudem's argument makes a similar mistake. It sounds good because most of us (I imagine) wouldn't suggest that we get rid of all laws and our police, etc. But, as you mention, what the government does and what we as Christians do are two separate things. Arguably God allows governments to maintain a certain amount of order in our world. But it's even clearer that he sees Christians as belonging to a different nation of which he is head. And he expects us to behave in a manner consistent with his rule.

Unknown said...

I watched The Passion of the Christ again last night and was reminded that Jesus never defended himself physically or verbally. As I watched my compassion was not for Christ because he knew exactly what he was doing. My compassion was for his accusers and attackers who could not see Jesus for who he really was... The Christ. They were so consumed with rage, hate and self that they were blind to the truth. When your're nailed to a cross you can't run away or defend yourself. I was raised to believe that America's wars were for just causes. The more I read the scriptures without commentary and outside influences, the more I realize how wrong my thinking has been. Thank you Keith for your heart and voice. It continues to encourage me! Peace!

Timothy said...

Keith, you completely missed it on this one. To start with, you misrepresent Dr. Grudem. I watched the video, and no he does not smirk when he talks about the power of the gospel to stop drunk driving. He believes in the power of the gospel to stop drunk driving. But he knows that not everyone is going to get saved. That is biblical. So we have government as well. And if Government is a good gift from God, and God's will, it is just really hard to understand how God doesn't want us to be involved in it.

You say of the laws,
Have they eliminated Drunk Driving? No, they haven't. But the Gospel hasn't eliminated drunk driving either. So you cancel out your own argument. And then you say that laws are not a deterrent for anything! Really? They are for me! Are you suggesting we should eliminate all laws?

Keith, your logic is deeply flawed. You are trying to be the subversive guy. That is your claim to fame. You are trying to be the church anarchist. You are trying to be the wrong thing.

Timothy said...

Before I buy a book, I read the reviews on Amazon, and I read the negative reviews first. Sometimes the negative reviews are all I need to read. I find some people giving negative reviews just because they don't like the content. Those are obviously worthless. But sometimes the negative reviews have done a good job of exposing the weakness of the author's position, and they tell me far more about the book than the positive reviewers who typically do not examine the argument so closely.

Boyd's book is a good example of the excellent analysis found in the 1 and 2 star reviews on Amazon.

Keith Giles said...

I stand behind my statements. Wayne's argument is that the Gospel, without the power of violence, is essentially worthless.

Notice the chuckles in the audience when Wayne suggests that he would not bother to use his energy to convert a home invader to Christ but would instead use force.

Keith Giles said...

Your method of using only negative Amazon reviews seems to be a great way to save money on books.