Thank you for your reply.
Firstly, (and one needn’t faith to agree here) I believe you’re doing a great disservice by neglecting this conversation further. There is too much neglect of good discussion and not enough good discourse, and I hope you will at least read this response and give some closing thoughts.
Secondly, I think the idea of prayer presented in your response is not the biblical prayer. Prayer brings us closer to Christ. We are in conversation with him. Our relationship with God in prayer is a dialectic: he is influences us, and we have an equal influence on him.
Your statement is correct, though we must be careful with our language. Faith without works is not useless, but impossible. To be clear:
- Works without faith does not get you salvation
- Faith in Christ’s sacrifice on the cross alone brings salvation
- Through faith, and a deep relationship with Christ, we are compelled to love our neighbour
You see, someone with faith should be compelled through their faith to share their love with one another. James 2:14–25 outlines this well, and I think you’ll find that you agree with it.
Let me take issue with the comic strip posted by Danna Colman that started this conversation. The image depicts a drowning man, and a Christian man on a boardwalk watching and praying. However, I contend that this is not an accurate analogy of the world. Rather, we are all drowning. We can either choose to drown, or Christ can pull us aboard his raft. No Christian is capable of pulling a drowning person out of the water, only Christ is.
Now, if we translate this to the real world: Any Christian that sees a person drowning will not pray for them in that moment, they will jump in and save them, because Christ is acting within them.
Now allow me to take issue with something else you stated: “to be polite as possible, nobody can alter my feelings about these words.” This is worrying. This position is one of dogmatism. Without the idea that you could change your mind, you will stray from the Truth so far, and you won’t even know it. You must be willing to converse with those that disagree with you, you must be willing to stand for your opinions and beliefs, not just throw them out into the public sphere and not fight for them.
And may I make one final point: no Christian risks Christ’s disapproval. No human risks his disapproval. He is the one person in the world that loves them perfectly. I encourage you to get to know him.
I hope to hear back from you.