Thursday, July 11, 2013

The niceness doctrine exposed



In today's blog I'd like to talk about the idea of niceness and how this philosophical way of living and thinking has been perpetrated on our society and has found its way into the Church. Now, as your know I try to get down to the nuts and bolts of thoughts, ideas, and meanings of words.

Most people probably are thinking what in the world is wrong with being nice? Why would anyone have a problem with such a wonderful virtue like niceness? Here is where we clear the air, so to speak. I'm looking at niceness as to a blanket acceptance of all thoughts, ideas, faith traditions, and behaviors. In our culture  tolerance, which is the brother of niceness has replaced the golden rule of loving your neighbor as yourself.

We are told through our media that to disagree with someone's lifestyle choices, or their views, say for example, one's views on abortion would make us intolerant or not nice, and who wants to be not nice or intolerant. And if you are strident in your religions beliefs or dogmatic in what you believe than the next level of accusation is the dreaded bigot label.

There is a powerful force at work in our society to steer the ship of though, belief, and ideology. And when one stands up to this powerful current that runs through the fabric of our society they better be ready to defend what they believe. Now, here is where I expose the weakness of this niceness concept; this idea that we all need to hold hands and sing Kumbaya, it is not only unhealthy, but it is outright UN-Biblical and violates all that God is.

This idea of niceness or accommodation to all thoughts and behaviors is totally foreign to the Christian world view. We should think more in terms of how we are to love, and it is here that we need to understand what God's love is like, and then seek to emulate that kind of love.

Let me offer four Biblical thoughts on love:

1.) Real love has zeal, self-sacrifice and an inherent call in it for change ( Isa. 49:15; 1Thess. 2:7-12).

2.) Love has built in to its fabric a call to "hang in there" with others, a call to walk the mile with them, a call to get into their skin (1 Cor. 13:4;1Thess.5:14).

3.) Love, loves those where they are at, but it  also seeks to lift them up and move them out of the pit ( Matt. 3:2; Gal.6:1).

4.) God's love for the unsaved comes with a story attached: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (1 Tim. 1:15). God's love is not a blanket acceptance of our lives, but God's love is an action story whereby He loves us so much that He gave us His one and only Son.

Think on this---if we offer blanket acceptance (niceness) to others there is no need then to call them to repentance. If we make people feel good about themselves by being nice than we just confirm them in their lifestyle without bringing the humility that is needed for one to enter the Kingdom of God. If we seek to comfort others and give a false sense of security than we have confirmed them in their self-sufficiency which is the ultimate sin against God.











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