Mano Paul claims there are 7 steps in Christian Life. There seems to be quite a bit of disagreement on the subject:
It’s odd that 16 got so many hits – probably a bug in the code. However, even those that agree that there are seven disagree on what they are:
J.W. Depson: 1. Live by faith; 2. Read your Bible; 3. Pray; 4. Go to church; 5. Get baptized; 6. Witness; 7. Be filled with the Holy Spirit
1st Baptist Barberville: A.Virtue B. Knowledge C. Temperance D. Patience E. Godliness F. Kindness G. Charity
Jen Davis: 1. God is Number One ; 2. No one’s perfect but try anyway; 3. Read God’s Word (presumably the Bible); 4. Create your vision; 5. Know thyself; 6. Live like an eagle, flying over your troubles; 7. Pray
So Mano, like all Christians, just made up his own rules, probably because he had only gotten as far in his dictionary as the “A” words: Accept, Acknowledge, Abide, Align, Act, Associate, Agree. It’s interesting how all of these verbs except one are deferential to some authority. What does Mano say about Act?
Step 4 in Christian life is to Act – act in accordance to his will, in service to him. What kind of service are Christians called to? We are called to serve one another, but not merely as servants, but soldiers as well.
Oh, well. (Wait, I thought Step 4 was Align, and Step 5 was Act? Oh right, he made them up.)
Mano, and many Christians hold this slavery and obsequiousness in the highest possible regard:
To be a servant of Christ Jesus does not necessarily mean, being a slave to him (although being called a bondservant (slave) of Christ would indeed be one of the highest accolades, active Christians can be honored with). It is not a sign of weakness but a sign of meekness and power, because as a servant of Christ, Christians are not called to be a doormat to be trampled upon, but they are called to bear the mighty weapons of God as soldiers for Christ. We are enlisted in God’s army and we serve behind enemy lines, fighting not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces, because the god of this world (the devil) has blinded the minds of many.
These mental gymnastics are amazing, the contortions into which Christians pretzel their minds to redefine their bondage as virtue, their weakness as power. They believe with all their hearts that joining the ranks of God’s soldiers give them some advantage over the rest of us. They believe that their delusions are the true reality, that they are the ones who are immune to the “Devil’s blindness”, with no more authority than a dusty tome of Bronze-Age goatherd myths. How do they know that the Bible wasn’t written by the devil?
Points to Ponder:
Who is more likely to be enslaved – a flock of sheep who have made virtue out of ignorance and slavery, or the skeptical who demand evidence and reason for their beliefs? If this mythical devil exists, it is certainly has the power to deceive any human – why toss out the one weapon we have (rationality), if that is the enemy we must fight? And if the devil doesn’t exist, rationality is the only means we have of living right in this world, anyway.