From Christianity & Liberalism by J. Gresham Machen:
Salvation, in other words, was not merely through Christ, but it was only through Christ. In that little word “only” lay all the offense. Without that word there would have been no persecutions; the cultured men of the day would probably have been willing to give Jesus a place, and an honorable place, among the saviors of mankind. Without its exclusiveness, the Christian message would have seemed perfectly inoffensive to the men of that day. So modern liberalism, placing Jesus alongside other benefactors of mankind, is perfectly inoffensive in the modern world. All men speak well of it. It is entirely inoffensive. But it is also entirely futile. The offense of the Cross is done away, but so is the glory and the power.
I scoured the internet today and found nothing of value that I wanted to pass on to my faithful readers. Instead I want to share some quotes from a book that I’ve started reading called Christianity and Liberalism by J. Gresham Machen. I became acquainted with this book through Tim Challies’ site.
I’m actually a little behind on this week’s reading, but have already come across some really thought provoking quotes. I throw a few of them out there for you now to ponder and discuss with me:
– The type of religion which rejoices in the pious sound of traditional phrases, regardless of their meanings, or shrinks from “controversial” matters, will never stand amid the shocks of life. In the sphere of religion, as in other spheres, the things about which men are agreed are apt to be the things that are least worth holding; the really important things are the things about which men will fight.
– But if any one fact is clear, on the basis of this evidence, it is that the Christian movement at its inception was not just a way of life in the modern sense, but a way of life founded upon a message. It was based, not upon mere feeling, not upon a mere program of work, but upon an account of facts. In other words it was based upon doctrine.
– Christ will do everything or nothing, and the only hope is to throw ourselves unreservedly on His mercy and trust Him for all.
– “Christ died”–that is history; “Christ died for our sins”–that is doctrine. Without these two elements, joined in an absolutely indissoluble union, there is no Christianity.
Thoughts? Questions? Feel free to comment below.