Second Chances Imply a First, Or Wired To Judge

I work with teenagers at one of my jobs, and the radio is played in their dorm. Modern pop radio of course. One day a song came on I had not yet heard (stunning for the repetition they are immensely guilty of) that began with a smooth guitar line, joined by a sharp rhythm by the drummer, and capped off by soulful and witty lyrics.

The song was rockin’, and I found myself surprised to be totally enjoying something on teenager pop radio.

As it turns out, the song is by one of the most criticized and lampooned band out these days. Had the song been prefaced by the radio announcer as a song by that particular band I would have found ways to pick on it and discount it before hearing a note. We seem to operate off of preconceived notions so that we can continue in our strict little ways uninterrupted.

Thankfully we’re so past this in Christianity. That was so 600 AD/CE.

I suggest we hear the songs instead of deciding before the first note plays if we’ll even allow it one chance. Brian McLaren said in a interview that Christians are fascinating readers in that many approach a book and immediately begin to judge if they agree or not, rather than consider what is being said. He says this phenomeon seems exclusive to Christians – they are the only ones who read to see if it stands the test of rightness. A very peculiar way to approach something.

We seem wired to judge. How many people discounted that entire last paragraph because Brian McLaren said it? Case in point.

Or, maybe if you are of the more progressive type Brian McLaren isn’t an issue for you – but John Piper is. Maybe Rick Warren. And it’s safe to say Joel Osteen is for everybody.

God has never been good stationary. He is always on the move. He loves to go to places people have never allowed him to be in their minds. Its almost as if he prefers those places.

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One Response to Second Chances Imply a First, Or Wired To Judge

  1. David says:

    Great topic. It is interesting that it is easier to name call, and judge than it is to take a minute to see where folks are coming from. Listening is an art. Here is a great place to start. 6 Levels of Listening

    Beyond the “natural” listening there is a “supernatural” listening.

    1 Corinthians 2:14 The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    This is where those that are not in tune with the spirit of God ( or don’t have it at all) will have some real trouble. There are certainly songs that are much more spiritually black than those that are just of the flesh. It is the same with literature and all the arts in fact. This same discernment needs to be used to “understand” the Bible and other spiritual messages; whether sermons, prophecies or Christian worship.

    The manicured American church is pretty much devoid of this sort of discernment. It is much more about corporate marketing and leadership tactics. People pretend to do what they think Jesus would do, and never actually hear his voice, and are not sure what he wants them to do. They pick and choose scriptures, and act on the ones they like, and dismiss the ones they don’t like.

    1 Corinthians 2:11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.

    Without the Spirit of God, we can’t know God’s thoughts, we can’t interpret the Bible, and we can’t be Christians no matter what we call ourselves.

    I will say that there are some authors, that after a few doses of their gospel of the flesh, I wouldn’t spend any more time listening. You already named a few of them. I have a rule, if they have been on Larry King; it is pretty much a waste of my time.

    Since the beginning of time, men have perverted the Scriptures. Without the spirit of God, it is pretty tough to tell which ones.

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