The Attractiveness of Being Different

We have been told that we have to make the Church attractive to the man outside and the idea is to become as much like him as we can…The glory of the gospel is that when the Church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it. It is then that the world is made to listen to her message, though it may hate it at first. That is how revival comes. That must also be true of us as individuals. It should not be our ambition to be as much like everybody else as we can, though we happen to be Christian, but rather to be as different from everybody who is not a Christian as we can possibly be. Our ambition should be to be like Christ, the more like Him the better, and the more like Him we become, the more we shall be unlike everybody who is not a Christian.

– Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, p. 28.

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2 comments

  1. I want to state something here. I know that the principle here is true as far as being different from the world, but I think sometimes this leads to a cynical and bitter disposition toward the world, of which is not as Christ was. He wore sandals, was dirty, ate as they ate, etc. I’m not saying we should do everything the world does, but rather not distance ourselves because we are scared or think we are above them. Therefore creating a stumbling block for us and them in regards to the spreading of the gospel.

    Fulltulip.com

    Chris – aka Keefee

  2. Agreed. There’s always that danger of over-emphasizing (“not of the world”) one part at the expense of the other (“in the world”) and we need to be careful to hold on to both. I feel pretty confident that although MLJ might trend more to the “not of the world” side, he understood that he could not as a Christian remove himself entirely from the world. I do wonder if there’s a tendency these days – as in MLJ’s time – to so stress the need to relate to the world that we become virtually indistinguishable from the world.

    Appreciate your comments, Chris. I’m honored that you’d take the time to weigh in.

    pete

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