Monday, August 11, 2008

The Brilliance of Dallas Willard

So I've been reading The Divine Conspiracy: Rediscovering Our Hidden Life in God by Dallas Willard, and let me first say: "Amazing book." I highly recommend it to anyone.

Obviously (if you've read it you'd understand), there is a ton going on that I could choose to blog about. But frankly, I don't really need to. Willard really does everything for you. And I really don't need to clear anything up or further discuss much. The book is excellently put together!

There was one thing he said, however, that I felt I simply needed to repeat. It's absolutely brilliant. I found it on p. 155 of my copy in the fifth chapter (The Rightness of the Kingdom Heart: Beyond the Goodness of Scribes and Pharisees). So here it is:

When I go to New York City, I do not have to think about not going to London or Atlanta. People do not meet me at the airport or station and exclaim over what a great thing I did in not going somewhere else. I took the steps to go to New York City, and that took care of everything.

Likewise, when I treasure those around me and see them as God's creatures designed for his eternal purposes, I do not make an additional point of not hating them or calling them twerps or fools. Not doing those things is simply part of the package. "He that loves has fulfilled the law," Paul said (Rom. 13:8). Really.

On the other hand, not going to London or Atlanta is a poor plan for going to New York. And being wrongly angry and so on is a poor plan for treating people with love. It will not work. And, of course, Jesus never intended it to be such a plan. For all their necessity, goodness, and beauty, laws that deal only with actions, such as the Ten Commandments, simply cannot reach the human heart, the source of actions.

Well put, Mr. Willard. Well put.

1 comment:

WES ELLIS said...

Well put indeed. Life is not about saying no to many things, it's about saying YES to few.