Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Andrew Klavan: the road to Hell


His point is largely secular and political... but isn't there a legit bank-shot for similar spiritual wrongheadedness?

8 comments:

firstjohnfourfive said...

Certainly! If I understand you correctly, that is.

Would you include under that umbrella of ‘wrongheadedness’ those who hold to a social gospel or Kingdom Now theology?

How about the dominionists or New Apostolic Reformation crowd?

Would you go so far as to include those who are preterist or even the ‘say a prayer and you’re saved’ folks?

Is this your implication, Dan?

I vote for Andrew Klavan to replace Glenn Beck.

Merrilee Stevenson said...

His last statement is the one that can be applied to spiritual wrongheadedness:

"Maybe the trouble is that good intentions make people feel good about themselves. So good, they don't really care where their road is going as long as the good feelings continue right to the end of the line."

Before leaving it at that and just pressing "publish," though, I will say that we all can benefit from a little self-scrutiny in applying this idea to our life and practice. While it's easy to find big-name examples to put up as poster-children for this "feel-good Churchianity," I also must look at myself and "see if there be any wicked way in me." Namely, I can often give myself a hall pass in the name of "ministry" at the expense of actually holding a real conversation with a real person about the real gospel and the real Jesus. (And I think it goes beyond the occasional Mormon or Jehovah's Witness who show up at my door.)

Just giving myself a good lashing. Thank you.

Lynda O said...

"The road to hell is paved with good intentions" -- yes, it certainly does have application to spiritual matters. From some of my current Bible readings, I think of the people of Jeremiah's day -- listening to the false prophets proclaiming "peace and safety" to their own ruin; but they felt good until destruction came. In our day it's the whole niceness agenda regarding homosexuals -- the "good intentions" of removing the social stigma of homosexuality and making the homosexuals feel good about themselves, rather than warning them of their certain destruction unless they repent. The people so convinced that such is unloving, who focus on loving the homosexuals as they are now, are really the ones doing greater harm -- but all along the road to hell, with good intentions.

Wendy said...

"Maybe the trouble is that good intentions make people feel good about themselves. So good, they don't really care where their road is going as long as the good feelings continue right to the end of the line."

I think it goes for the leaders too, not just followers. The people who start these movements - secular and spiritual - do it to feel good about themselves. They've started something great, people are looking to them, being able to tell people "I started THIS" is the ultimate feel-good.

Which is, I suppose, pride. Which is why people actually think they can do anything apart from God and the transforming work of the Holy Spirit in their lives.

Klavan uses wonderful examples of the world trying to *make itself* a better place. And that is definitely the road to hell.

The personal applications are quite convicting.

Nathan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
trogdor said...

It's easy to see the application to the lefty church groups who mimic the lefty political groups. But it's really quite a bit broader than that. Consider the attempts at 'relevance' that take so many forms: seeker-sensitive pep talks masquerading as sermons, gross-out games aimed at the yoots, Jesus-gear playing off the latest pop culture fad. All of them have the 'good intention' of getting their attention and getting them in the door. Certainly nobody could argue that reaching non-believers is a bad thing, right? (Well, I suppose hyper-Calvinists could, but they're wrong.) But at what cost? And are they genuinely being reached (and with what)?

Or consider the good intention of doctrinal purity. Am I all for preventing heresy from popping up in the church? Well, duh. But how much harm is done by this good intention being used in ways far beyond what is commanded? How many people have been crushed by someone claiming zeal for the Word without practicing fidelity to the Word?

Uzzah had good intentions. Cain had good intentions. Eve had good intentions. The Jewish leaders who murdered Jesus had good intentions. Saul the persecutor of the church had good intentions.

Good intentions, separated from what God has revealed to be actually good, can be disastrous.

Wendy said...

Good intentions, separated from what God has revealed to be actually good, can be disastrous.

That's a much better way of putting it.

James Joyce said...

One other way to put it is...
"Every sin that I ever committed seemed like a good idea at the time."