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10 things you can’t do and follow Jesus

10 things you can’t do and follow Jesus

Mark Sandlin lists 10 things you can’t do while following Jesus. Sojourners carries the story:

Lots of people claim to be “following Jesus” and then they do stuff like this. Sure, people who follow Jesus do these things all the time, but you can’t say you are doing them because you are trying to follow Jesus’ example.

4) Judge others.

3) Be physically aggressive or violent.

2) Use the church to hurt people.

1) Hate.

Read all 10 and why one can’t do them and follow Jesus.

The problem for me is that upon being told “you can’t” – my reaction is “oh yeah” or “but what about?” What do you think about the list?


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Kurt Wiesner

Mark Sandlin:

Noted. In fact, I mentioned that when I posted the link yesterday morning on Facebook:

Don’t care for the “can’t do” line, but Mark Sandlin’s description works: “Sure, people who follow Jesus do these things all the time, but you can’t say you are doing them because you are trying to follow Jesus’ example.”

And it’s a good list…

That above was me.

Mark Brunson

I read it, and the entirety makes these last four more pernicious. I have no more time for nuance. You may if you like, but I reject it. “Judge not,” is used as a cop-out. I don’t judge, because I *can’t* decide whether people go to Hell or not – for which as many liberals as conservatives can be grateful – it is not the same as “Hey, it’s all good, man!” which is what this list, boiling down in its last four points preaches. Even Paul speaks of discernment. Even Jesus gives a process for calling someone to repentance and declaring them no longer of the community. This weak gruel of supposed “commitment”, speaks of a distinct lack of any commitment, a fear of confrontation, and, above all, a rancid, self-immolating fear of being wrong, born, not of humility, but of self-hatred. One acting from humility will still act as necessary, knowing that he is doing the best he may with what God has given him. This is mere cowering from self, from responsibility, from failure.

Mark Brunson (added by ed.)


Read the full piece, Mark. It’s more contextual than the (overly-simplified) excerpt above.

The “Judge Not” one is tricky. I would say it’s perhaps it’s the only one on the list where “What Would Jesus Do?” is not the relevant question (i.e., Jesus CAN judge, because Jesus is God. But we ain’t, so we can’t)

JC Fisher

It’s inaccurate. Whip of cords, temple, “whitewashed sepulchres,” those not having a sword acquiring one – this list isn’t Jesus but a weak, watery idol made of New Age sentimentalism, the result of a safe, secure, utterly unchallenged middle-class life and little devotion to Christ. It’s as pernicious a deformation as right-wing “christianity.” As false as a simpering bird-bath St. Francis. The only one I would agree with of the four here is that you can’t use the church to hurt others – largely because there was no church in Jesus’ lifetime. If I offend, I’m sorry you took offense, but this weak-kneed, apologetic “Jesus” caricature is an absolute disaster, not at all the Christ striding through the “way things have always been” to change them, but rather the disciples, hiding in a room to save their own skins, convinced it’s over.

Mark Brunson

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