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Friday, December 4, 2009

Going to Hell.



Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
(NIV, 1st Corinthians 6:9-11)
Chris, have any thoughts on the "washed" part? I call myself a Christian yet I drink more than my wife thinks I should. Why haven't I been washed of the desire to drink? Greed, I would rather put money in my bank account than give it to a church (don't attend), yet I don't mind sharing with the guy who has the 'will work for food' sign. "...will not inherit the kingdom of God.." does this mean I am going to hell? Didn't Noah dring alot?
     This is a written reprimand against denominations. (my first heresy of the day!) the other stuff is incidental, and I myself will place the words in red before the words of Paul, and I don't believe that ongoing sin causes us to lose favor with God. Ya know, I don't read Greek or Hebrew (I've actually got some curriculum laying around, for when I get caught up...when I got it the first glance was intimidating :D), but your average churchy fella will probably say that this refers to our being "cleansed" of sin. There are lotsa verses people quote. I like "as far as the east is from the west." Quite a few Christians I have talked with teach that God does not even remember our sin (This is total bullshit...as Andy Stanley observes, if this were the case, every sermon that mentioned David nailing Bathsheba would leave God puzzled, and disoriented...divine Alzheimer's.)      Another popular doctrine is that we must ask for forgiveness each time we sin, in spite of the fact that Jesus died for every sin, past present or future. There are a dozen posts just in that concept alone...thanks for the fodder.           God has not removed your desire to drink. I don't know that he ever will. I predict if you continue to drink, the desire will become more entrenched. If we wanna go on a doctrinal acquisition foray through the Gospels, we find an interesting take on what mainstream religianity calls substance abuse.
  •       There is a serious party that has run out of the most popular drug of choice for that culture and that time.
  • Jesus's  Ma nudges him about this (she must think it's a problem...furthermore, she seems to think he can fix it and his first miracle, according to some, hasn't happened yet)
  • Jesus responds with an irritated "so what, Ma...you ain't the boss of me anymore"
  • Mary ignores him and tells servants to do whatever he says. ( Have you ever told your Mom you didn't wanna do as she asked, and she just acted like you never spoke? Mary invented this technique. I always forget, as this point in the story, Mary has got to at least  be in her early forties.
  • I've been to large weddings. When a large wedding has been drunk dry, their are a few serious buzzes stumbling around.
  • In spite of this, Jesus miraculously manufactures between 120 and 180 gallons of wine.
  • It's better than anything that has been drank so far that day/evening. (When Jesus makes drugs, he makes 'em good. You would expect no less.)
  • This takes us to a spiritual place the average Baptist (or any 'Alcohol Bad!' denominational) cannot bring himself to visit...Jesus has "kept the party going" with over 100 gallons of badass hooch when several people have already got a bellyful. This is recreational drug use.
     I get a few unconventional doctrines out of this.
  1. Obviously, Alcohol is not a sin.
  2. Quite possibly, getting mildly ripped upon occasion is viewed benevolently by God. Let it be so.
  3. It's okay to get irritated with your mother. Do what she asks, anyway.
Of course, Alcoholism is real. Will bite your ass. Just ask my ex wife.
     As to greed, IMO greed is not a have/don't have characteristic for most of us. It is a question of how much you got, and what form does it take. If you will give to a homeless guy, you must have a nugget of compassion, or guilt, or something buried in that little heart of yours. :)
    We know Noah got shitfaced at least once, we don't know if Noah drank a lot. I feel safe in assuming he didn't drink enough to be a fuckup.We all have a point where enough alcohol or any recreational drug for that matter, begins to degrade the quality of our life. I assure you that if we have begun to notice it, significant damage has already been done. There are places where "Hell" refers to the Jerusalem town dump, in the red ink, no less. There are references to the "Lake of Fire". Neither is a good spot to aim for, I would imagine. There is no place I know of where Jesus said "This is how to stay out of Hell"
     Religianity will detail things you must do to obtain what they call "The Free Gift Of Grace", which seems a contradiction to me, but I am a heretic. They will list ways you must feel, motives you must have, and even a chant you must utter, as in "repeat after me, to get saved".
     I don't think they quite grasp the reality of unmerited favor. I don't think you are going to hell.

     
Anonymous,
     I would like to mention a couple things.
     More than once, your comments have been sad. You drink. I don't know how much you drink, but drinking and sadness can precipitate a helluva nasty spiral and you know this, though it is easy to forget. If your wife has a problem, You have a problem. Period. Love comes with complications. Also, I've never met a wife who thought her husband drank too much....who was wrong about it. Your wife is afraid. Do something. These things don't go away and they will contribute to your sadness. And we know what sadness will contribute to, in a man who likes to catch a buzz. Be very careful.
    

3 comments:

  1. Chris!!!! This is my most favorite post ever. EVER. By far. It's irreverent, it's honest, it's fresh, it's truth, it's liberating, and it's full of compassion.

    Your insight is freakin' amazing, as are you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. And I left out "hilarious", too.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks, Eva. It came out quicker than easier than most. It reminded me of the homeless guy post...(There was never a struggle with content, though I usually edit after I post because I get blind to the spell check squiggly, and never catch all the boo-boos before pushing the publish button. This was a helluva compliment, made precious by it's eloquence...and it's source.

    ReplyDelete

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