Thursday, August 11, 2005

A Sermon's Links

The sermon I am preparing for Saturday is about the tension between scripture's view that obedience to God allows us to best "get on with life" and the human need to do more to make life holy and complete, and thus to make obedience to God an end rather than a beginning.

The sermon will be added to the P'nei Adonai website FAQ page as "How does Messianic Judaism teach me to sanctify life?".

At one point I write a paragraph that could include two hyperlinks to give credit to sources that caused me to ponder. But such linking would be inappropriate from the P'nei website. Since I do not cite anything from those other webpages it is not necessary to cite them to avoid plagarism, and linking would be a distraction to the reader of the essay.
So here, in this more appropriate place, is the paragraph with the links.
We naturally prefer activity that allows us to feel in control. Today we can see political protesters who do activity that makes their cause less popular because it feels "good for their soul", and we see abused children who convince themselves that they are at fault since deserving the abuse means they can also stop the abuse. Similarly, we desire spiritual activity in which we do something that is good for our soul, so that we can do more when we want more improvement, and do what comes easily to allow easy improvement. It is uncomfortable when God's Spirit asks us to remove a firmly established bad habit we would rather not deal with and then rest as God's Spirit replaces it with virtue.
Update: During the sermon I also mentioned a link to an essay conjecturing that each of the Narnia books focuses on a different one of Gregory's "Seven Deadly Sins".