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Bleak Theology: Hopeful Science

All people that on earth do dwell [Rom 14]

There are no enemies in Christ. We have traditions and customs, some of which are useful. Some of us have times and seasons for fasting and others avoid certain foods. This may be good for our bodies, and the discipline may centre us on Christ, but it does little good to our souls. For our salvation is in Christ alone, and too much dependence on virtue leads to pride, which is itself a sin.

As we do this, we need to acknowledge that there are some things which are taste, or custom, and have no particular moral import. There is nothing different in following Australian Rules, Association Football (Soccer to the heathen), American Football, or the game beer ads is played in heaven.

What matters is your situation with Christ. He has covered your sins. He is your righteousness, and it is none of your doing.

Romans 14:13-23

13 Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another. 14 I know and am persuaded in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself; but it is unclean for anyone who thinks it unclean. 15 If your brother or sister is being injured by what you eat, you are no longer walking in love. Do not let what you eat cause the ruin of one for whom Christ died. 16 So do not let your good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not food and drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 The one who thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and has human approval. 19 Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding. 20 Do not, for the sake of food, destroy the work of God. Everything is indeed clean, but it is wrong for you to make others fall by what you eat; 21 it is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that makes your brother or sister stumble. 22 The faith that you have, have as your own conviction before God. Blessed are those who have no reason to condemn themselves because of what they approve. 23 But those who have doubts are condemned if they eat, because they do not act from faith; for whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.

Psalm 138

1 I give you thanks, O LORD, with my whole heart;
before the gods I sing your praise;
2 I bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness;
for you have exalted your name and your word
above everything.
3 On the day I called, you answered me,
you increased my strength of soul.

4 All the kings of the earth shall praise you, O LORD,
for they have heard the words of your mouth.
5 They shall sing of the ways of the LORD,
for great is the glory of the LORD.
6 For though the LORD is high, he regards the lowly;
but the haughty he perceives from far away.

7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve me against the wrath of my enemies;
you stretch out your hand,
and your right hand delivers me.
8 The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.

So why do we work? For it is for the glory of God. It is the purpose of God that we build a house, not made of stones, but of the people he has called to him. It is not a signal. It is the lives changed by your presence that will glorify God. Or lead to him being cursed.

For the Chief Aim of Man is to know God and glorify him forever.