Take note preachers and parents: Believing that simply telling sinners to “stop it” (i.e., law without gospel) carries the power to exact lasting change is as silly and unrealistic as this:
This is absolutely true, Tullian.
A simple “Stop it!” may cause children to stop their false behavior on the outside, but their hearts won’t be changed at all. For as soon as there is nobody around who urges them to do or just not to do something, they always will be tempted “to sin”, resp. to reveal themselves as transgressors of the imposed “law” (though with a bad conscience indeed).
But parenting is necessary; otherwise our kids will parent themselves or be parented by our culture around. So what to do? I decided to go the way of tough love, so to speak. However, without our Lord’s help to renew my own heart by His Spirit I’ll remain either some legalistic mother or a casual liberal transgressor too. Honestly, I’m not so “tough” and am very grateful having a thoroughly tough husband who always knows to assert himself. I also notice that it’s not easy to get rid of certain educational patterns of one’s own childhood/youth, be that a more liberal or conservative education. So I’m always learning. What I appreciate most and am thankful for is that our Lord loves us just the way we are, never demanding anything that would be impossible to do. Jesus simply understands everything and never accuses me of my failures. He is so lovely!
I think the best parenting is to be honest, admitting that I’m not perfect at all though I’m trying my very best. So often I wonder what would be the right thing to do (more rigor? more love? more “rules”?) and I ask Jesus to help me. He always does, be that through His Word or by directly speaking to my heart, so that I suddenly “know” how to decide; in the latter case this is a real “heart conviction” nobody would be able to take away from me.
Geoff and I have watched this a few times over the past year and a half or so. It's awesome!!!
I was on a widely read ladies' blog one day a few months back trying to lovingly and graciously say that it's not good for women to keep telling other women to "just stop it." I tried to explain that not only was is not gracious, it's a form of legalism, laying on burdens, guilt tripping and a form of condemnation. Of course it's good for women to encourage women toward godliness and spiritual maturity, but that comes through speaking the gospel and the law of Christ through grace and longsuffering and usually within the context of a relationship, not through critical blog posts. All of a sudden there was a circling of the wagons and all the other tactics that go into protecting the author/authors and I could see that what I meant to be a gentle word of exhortation to try to help the author/authors see that there is a more gracious and gospel-centered way of discussing the issues, had fallen on deaf ears. It made me so sad. I remember these things all too well. One of the saddest things to me is how often I used to use the "God-honoring" tactic of "just stop it." :-(
I'm glad you posted this.
You stop it! (!_!)
The power to just "Stop It!" does not rest in the power of the flesh. Only the supernatural, life-giving, internally abiding presence and power of the Spirit of Christ can effect such change (Rom 8:13). All other human methodology is useless. The Church needs to put away its Morality 101 handbook and seek once again the new Life that comes from above, where our risen and exalted Christ is enthroned with all power and authority.
That was a funny bit.
I've always liked Bob Newhart.
"As Christians, so many of us were taught that the day we got "saved", everything became okay and all our old problems, habits, and ungodly lifestyles vanished instantly. Because of that, it's as if we ignore the reality of what we're going through,thinking things will magically get better,and in many cases,it seems as if people check out of their minds instead of renewing their minds."
excerpt from "The Necessity of an Enemy" by Ron Carpenter Jr
What a fun video to watch. It provided a great laugh.
Here are some more thoughts expounding on the video at the following link:
If "stop it" was sufficient and effective then Jesus died for no reason and the Father really is guilty of child abuse. The cross was excessive and unnecessary.
But "stop it" only entices more sin. The Law only provokes our sinful selves to more disobedience. In striving to keep it, we alter it. In claiming to have kept it, we prove ourselves unworthy of the grace for having fallen short of it.