Friday, October 7, 2011

Escape the Default Mode

"...as Martin Luther noted, religion forms the default mode of the human heart. It is essential, then, that we distinguish religion from the gospel.  Religion, as the default mode of our thinking and practices, is based on performance: 'I obey; therefore I am accepted by God.' The basic operating principle of the gospel, however, is, not surprisingly, an about-face, one of unmerited acceptance: 'I am accepted by God through Christ; therefore, I obey.' To truly understand this paradigm shift at a life-altering level requires that the gospel be explored and 'looked into' at every opportunity and in regular, systematic ways."

Tim Keller, from the foreword to J. D. Greear's Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary, page xiv.