SILENCE: SELF-JUSTIFICATION STOPPER
The tongue is our most powerful weapon of manipulation. A frantic stream of words flows from us because we are in a constant process of adjusting our public image. We fear so deeply what we think other people see in us that we talk in order to straighten out their understanding. If I have done some wrong thing (or even some right thing that I think you may misunderstand) and discover that you know about it, I will be very tempted to help you understand my action! Silence is one of the deepest disciplines of the Spirit simply because it puts the stopper on all self-justification.
One of the fruits of silence is the freedom to let God be our justifier. We don't need to straighten others out.
BLESSED ARE THE RESTRAINED
We might have much peace if we would not meddle with other people's sayings and doings....Blessed be the true, simple, and humble people, for they shall have a great plenitude of peace.
Religious tolerance is not always a sign of good will. It can be a sign of careless, perhaps hypocritical religious indifference of the most high-handed philosophic relativism. It can also be a mask behind which to hide downright malice. During the Nazi era, for example, arguments for Christian openness to other perspectives were used by German Christians in an attempt to neuter the church's protest against the neopaganism of Hitler and his minions. The Confessing Church in Germany found in [John 10] a theological basis to stand against Hitler. There are times in which the only way to keep alive the nonvindictive, nonjudgmental, self-sacrificing witness of Jesus Christ is to stand with rude dogmatism on the rock that is Jesus Christ, condemning all ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 60+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more