Stop Teaching Moralism!


(Image courtesy of

"The Church has been trying to preach morality and ethics without the Gospel as a basis; it has been preaching morality without godliness; and it simply does not work" (Martin Lloyd Jones, Preaching and Preachers, 2011).
Recently, I heard several adolescents share their story of conversion to faith in Christ, what many people call "personal testimonies."

The recurring synopsis I heard was this: "I grew up in a Christian home, so I don't have any radical story of coming out of rebellion or anything like that.  I grew up going to church and I accepted Jesus into my heart when I was a kid.  Still, I don't have this Christianity thing figured out.  I just don't see how God could love me.  I keep sinning and I keep struggling with doubt."  Then in closing, essentially, "But, hopefully Jesus will let me into heaven; even though I'm not perfect, I'm trying hard to do what pleases Him."

My initial reactions to hearing student after student talk about their conversion in this manner left me feeling sorry for them and angry at... - well, something.

Judging By Appearances

(Image courtesy of
"Without faith it is impossible to please God" (Hebrews 11:6).
Not all non-Christians are vile scum picketing outside the gates of heaven.  By all appearances, I know quite a few upstanding, nice, generous sinners.  I'm sure you do too.  In fact, sometimes these non-Christians outdo me in patience and generosity.

Why, then, does God still find fault with the non-Christian?  Why will they be found guilty on the day of judgement and go away to darkness and gnashing of teeth?

Blog Archive