Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Si Beh Pai Seh

I have to blog this.

Just now, one of my customer told me something told to him by one of his subcontractor.

This subconstrator's daily task is to provide all kinds of electrical-related household services to the public. That means, if you need another electricity powerpoint, you look for him. If you need to install a security camera, you look for him. If you need any services related to wires and electricity in the house, you look for him.

This subcontractor is a Christian. Though he is, yet his outlook as a contractor doesn't bear the typical Christian image (white-collared middle class citizens). So, when he goes into someone's house, very unlikely he will be noticed as a Christian.

And do you know what did this subcontrator told my customer?

Throughout his career, in his routine of going in and out of countless households to perform his duty, he has encountered many people in their private space, that is their home. With the extensive experiences of encountering people at their own home, he remarked astonishingly that the worst type of his customers are Christians. And the worst among the worst are pastors and their spouse!


Kar Yong said...

Am I surprised? No - I have seen some ugly side as seminaries, homes of pastors, and my own home???

Sze Zeng said...

Hi KY,

You have seen a lot more than I do.

Our 'Christian's situation' is rather sad, when things like this comes to ears. When I heard what my customer said... I started to examined myself and need to repent of those unaware mistakes that I've done.

Mercy~ mercy~

The Inquisitor said...

"They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.

But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."


The Christian situation is by definition sad, that's why they are Christians. It is the sinners and the unpleasant and rude people that needs the Saviour, not the victorious or the righteous.

Sze Zeng said...

Hi Inquisitor,

You have rightly said. You have pointed out one part of the gospel of the old creation that needs to be redeemed.

There's another part of the gospel on the new creation where new order is victorious, righteous, joyous, and desirable.

It's the other part of the gospel that Christians still hesitant to heed. Generally, many of us still prefer emphasis to be on the former part of the gospel. But Christians should have equal emphasis on both, to take the gospel as a whole.

And it's the lack of holistic embodiment of the gospel that makes up all these sad stories.

Jack Said said...

human nature...

The Inquisitor said...

"There's another part of the gospel on the new creation where new order is victorious, righteous, joyous, and desirable."

The New creation and new order, is in the eschatological future, it is not yet, and it is not now.

The fight for holiness is bloody, full of disappointments and set backs. The so-called "victory" is won by Christ and will be displayed by Christ in the future. But now, it is a bloody battle against sin, and it is not "won" yet.

I think the idea of "victorious" Christians tends to lead to a sort of "spiritual elistism" between the "defeated Christians" whom we sniff our noses at because they haven become better or are still struggling in sin and then "victorious Christians" who can happily boast of a "former" life of sin oh-so successfully abandoned and secretly despise the other "defeated Christians" who can't seem to appropriate the "victory of Christ" unto themselves.

But it matters not, others may imagine the fight against Sin as already won and sniff their noses at others who aren't "victorious" against sin. The rest of us instead shall engage in the battle against sin on the ground and hope in the *future* victory which is to come and which will be won by Christ.

Sze Zeng said...

"The New creation and new order, is in the eschatological future, it is not yet, and it is not now."

The unique thing about Christian eschatology is "already but not yet".

That means Christians are victorious and should live likewise yet acknowledge such victory is a humble state, and thus endlessly seeking to strive for better and better 'victorial state' which culminates in the eternal victory at the second coming.

St. Paul disagrees with you that 'new creation' is not now. 2 Cor 5:16-18, Gal 6:14-16.

The idea "already but not yet" might seem contradictory but nonetheless that's what the narrative of the NT says; beginning with Jesus' speech and acts, that symbolize the renewal of the world through Israel, to the writings of St Paul and St John (1 John 5.3-5).

On the other hand, I understand your concern on 'spiritual elitism'. That is another matter on discipleship and spiritual maturity to be dealt with. And that does not change Christian eschatology.

A victorious Christian should not practice 'spiritual elitism'. Such practice simply repudiates the 'victoricity' of the person.

Sniffing out sins as in condemning/despising others as failing to be Christ-like is definitely not Christ-like. Thus it does back begging the idea whether is that sniffer really a victorious Christian.