Socialism on Judgment Day?

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4233908_m“You call yourself a Christian, where is your compassion for the poor?” demanded the cheeky student. Dr. Jenkins knew that the girl had been thoroughly brainwashed into the European socialism that has overtaken American universities. He also suspected that she spoke for the rest of the students in his economics class.

The good professor was about to respond with a rant that would make Rush Limbaugh proud when a sudden burst of inspiration stopped him short and sent him in a different direction. “How many of you believe that socialism is the answer for the American economy?” he asked. The show of hands was disheartening, if not surprising.

“Okay, let’s put it to the test. I propose that from this moment forward, we handle the grading of this course on a socialistic model. We are going to apply the principles of socialism—that great social equalizer—to the scoring of your tests. From now on,” he continued, “I’m going to average out all your grades and give everyone—no matter how poorly or how well you did on the test—the same grade. That’s socialism. Do you agree to this arrangement?” The students looked around unsure of themselves until the sassy girl once again took it upon herself to represent the entire class. “We agree!”

The first test under the new system was administered the following week. As promised, Dr. Jenkins calculated the scores and the median grade of C+ was applied to each student’s record. Diligent students were suddenly becoming nervous about this new arrangement while the laggards were quietly ecstatic.

Three weeks later, he gave the second test, only now even the “A” students were noticeably unmotivated. This time the average grade across-the-board had dropped to a dismal D. By the end of the school year—having been gutted of any motivation to put forth real effort —the entire class had flunked! It was a lesson in economics those students would never forget.

As I pondered this enlightening story, I had my own revelation. “Wait a minute,” I exclaimed to myself, “that’s exactly what’s happened in the Church!”

In our case, it has been the biblical principle of grace that has become the Great Equalizer. Over the past century, ear-tickling preachers have emphasized the “grace message” at the expense of the equally important subjects of obedience, righteousness and holiness–leaving people with the sense that anyone who shows the slightest inclination, no matter how they actually live their lives, are assured of eternal life.

Also de-emphasized has been the vital doctrine that Jesus Christ will render to every person rewards in accordance to their deeds. A bland “one-size-fits-all” concept of heaven has replaced the biblical teaching that our efforts for Christ will one day be richly rewarded with a greater capacity to enjoy God.

Since a righteous life, sacrificial love or consecrated living are not expected of God’s people and since everyone receives the same benefits of salvation, there is no reason to press in to know God; no reason to strive against one’s lower nature; no reason to reject worldly enticements; no reason to do much of anything except show up for church on Sundays. Is it any wonder then that the Church has lost her power and her fire?

The whole concept of socialism looks good to idealistic students in the sterile environment of a university classroom, but the reality of it in the workplace is another matter. Likewise, in seminary, it may seem like a good idea to promote a cheap version of God’s grace, but it doesn’t work in the real world of Christianity. In both cases, people are taught that those who strive for the best will be penalized, while the careless—in the name of Compassion—will be granted a free ride.

Thank God that He is not bound to man’s corruptions of His truth! Those who buy into the notion of cheap grace are only cheating themselves, for the age-old maxim that “you reap what you sow” will prove to be true in the end.

And it is right that it is so for the Lord has mercifully created a just system where every human being—regardless of his status in life—will receive precisely what he has shown he desired. As the apostle said, “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” (2 Corinthians 9:6)

No, you can rest assured that there will be no socialistic formulas at work on Judgment Day. “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.” (Revelation 22:12)

 

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About the Author:

In 1986, Steve founded Pure Life Ministries (PLM), the first ministry in the world to sexual addicts. Over the years he and his wife Kathy did their utmost to create a spiritual atmosphere for men who entered the PLM residential center. It was part of God's plan for him to begin this ministry, but over the years the Lord laid a burden on Steve's heart to call the Church back to holy living. In 2008, Steve stepped down from running PLM to devote the rest of his life to exposing the great apostasy, calling people to repentance and leading Christians into an eternal perspective. Follow Steve Gallagher on Google+
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Comments

  1. Steve  March 5, 2012

    Note to Readers: This commentary was included in a blog on another website where one reader took exception with the idea that it somehow promotes a works motivated salvation. I felt it would be good to respond to that here as others might get the same idea. My response to it is that, just as we should not press the parables of Jesus beyond the primary point He was making, so too in modern-day metaphors such as the one I used here, we should do our best to accept its main point on face value and not read into it more than was intended.

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  2. Walter R Whipple  March 8, 2012

    I heartily agree with you Steve, as there are many scriptures that come to mind that supports every thing you said in addition to the one[s] that you referenced. May I share some of my experience on my former take on God’s amazing grace? I was one of the many who were duped by this over-kill teaching of grace over a period of many years. God was always faithful to give me some ‘clues’ of my error, like, ‘Why am I not being tested in my Christian faith?’…’Why is the devil not giving me a hard time?’ and the clincher, _Where is all that “joy unspeakable and full of glory” and “I’ve got the joy joy joy joy down in my heart, where? Down in my heart!”_ that I’ve been singing about for so many years? I must be missing something. I usually zoned out during the preaching. Mustn’t lie here, I slept through it. Figured I already knew all I really needed to know anyway. I was in church for the singing mostly not the message. But God did use the music to reach me, He is so smart and so good! And he finally got my undivided attention that I got to listen to his voice more and more. To quote Leonard Ravenhill, “There are two things you must do with the Bible, believe it and behave it!” I deeply appreciate this blog. Thank you Pastor Steve.

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  3. Joel Cress  March 20, 2012

    Amen, Brother Steve! As an Assemblies of God pastor, I share the burden of your heart with respect to the socialized gospel of today–far from the “You must be born again” message of our younger years.

    What if Christ chose to die for us as we have chosen to live for Him? I fear that we would be, of all men, most miserable. The following song that I wrote last year addresses this very concern.

    Chorus:
    The heart of the Gospel, the heart of the Gospel,
    Repent for the Kingdom is at hand!
    The heart of the Gospel, the heart of the Gospel,
    This foundation of truth will always stand.
    Refuse your need of Jesus, and your Savior turns away
    It’s time to repent of your sin—get on your knees and pray!
    That’s the heart of the Gospel, to seek the Lord today.

    There are messages now being preached, though not entirely new,
    Words that soothe the ear, and fill the plate, and pack the cushioned pew.
    These plastic, hollow messages sound foreign to Jesus’ ear;
    They are not the Gospel He would want to hear.

    Repentance preaching of yesteryear won’t tickle itching ears.
    Some will call it utter foolishness, and hate its certain fears.
    But the challenge of our message is not God’s grace by far,
    But to show sinners how lost they truly are!

    O sinner, repent while there is time—don’t wait ‘til it’s too late!
    For Jesus bled and died for you; enter in this narrow gate.
    In sin you’re never good enough to earn salvation’s crown;
    By His blood no force of hell can bring you down!

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  4. Daniel  August 4, 2014

    The Word says, If we believe in Christ in this life and the dead are not raised we are to be pitied above all men. Meaning if there is no heaven, hell and final judgement our work and Christian life is in vain. I agree with this, except I serve the Lord because He deserves to be served. I am faithful to God becasue no one, I mean NO ONE is faithful as our God. Also, He is awesome in might and in power, how can we not bow down in His presence. I want santification and holiness because my greatest desire in life is to be like my brother Jesus. I am absolutely estactic that our Lord has prepared a place for me in heaven, with overwhelming gratitude, but I truly want to behold the beauty of my Lords holiness apart from eternal reward. God Bless.

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  5. Peter James  August 6, 2014

    I’ve not taken Christianity seriously or the things of the LORD; I want to definitely press in more and more to Jesus Christ. I want Him to be the center; I no longer want mediocre. Thanks Steve for this message.

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    • Philip  November 19, 2014

      Thank you Pastor Gallagher for that excellent insight. Titus 2:11-14 says that “The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say no to ungodliness and worldly passions and to live upright, self-controlled, godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope; the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us. To redeem us from all wickedness and purify for Himself a people that are his very own. Eager to do what is good.” What a promise of His grace actively working in my life to bring a true righteousness straight from him in a Father-to-son relationship! In Him I can live self-controlled and upright AND say no to sin. I need to avail myself of His presence and this kind of grace and mercy more. Much more.

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  6. David  January 8, 2015

    Actually Jesus is pretty clear in Matthew 25:36-44 about what judgment day will look like -see http://judgmentday.info

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