Question: What really matters in life?
Fear: Nothing matters.
At the Tower of Babel we must contemplate the super spirituality and self-righteousness that has led us astray. It may seem like building a tower to heaven is a good idea, but if our intention is to usurp God, or to distract us from what is really important to Jesus, then we have gotten off track. To illustrate how easy this is, I chose to highlight cussing, but there are a myriad of minor habits or vices I could have chosen. It’s important that as we grow in our faith that we identify our “towers,” or those trivial things that lead us astray.
One good litmus test is provided by both Jesus and Paul. Jesus essentially taught us that there is nothing more important than loving God and loving our neighbor. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13 that faith, hope, and love are among the most important elements of our worldview. And of those, nothing is more important than love.
So test your theology and ethics in this way. Do my opinions, actions, thoughts, and spoken words lead me to a deeper love and grace? If not, then that ought to be a red flag.
My guess is that you can think of a bunch of examples where leaders in the church became so obsessed with the color of the carpet, where to put the piano, room assignments, and the like that they acted un-Christlike. While just about everyone who has been in church for any length of time has a similar anecdote to tell, not many stop to ask, “How has legalism and/or dualism led me astray?”
Our faith should lead us to challenge our presuppositions, to learn how to listen to others who think differently, to love radically, and to be obedient to the spirit of the law rather than the letter of the law.
Walter Rauschenbusch, Christianity and the Social Crisis
Ronald Sider, Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger
Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn