Thursday, February 27, 2014

If Jesus did it, it must be okay for me to do it too!

One of the "Christian" arguments against laws which protect religious liberty against the homosexual lobby is the oft-cited example of Jesus hanging out with sinners. There are, of course, many problems with that comparison. The difference between free association and forced association. The difference between association and validation. But I'd like to draw attention to another flaw in the comparison.
The underlying assumption of the argument is that it's okay for me to follow Christ's example. Whatever he does licenses me to do the same thing. But is that the case? 
Because I'm a sinner, whereas Jesus was impeccable, Jesus could engage in certain associations which wouldn't be morally or spiritually safe for me. For instance, Jesus could visit a strip club without succumbing to sinful lust. That doesn't mean I can do the same thing.

Or take other comparisons like a recovering alcoholic going go a bar, with no intention of drinking. But once he's inside...

So, for instance, it would be good for a church to have an outreach ministry to strip clubs, but it should be the women of the church who do that. 

Likewise, it's good to have an outreach ministry to local taverns, but recovering alcoholics shouldn't be the evangelists in that setting. It places them under undue temptation to fall off the wagon. 

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