Confucius' Advice to Modern Day Christians

Any modern day Christians will like to hear good sermons. Some told me they must go to such and such a church to get charge-up every week. Some told me they attend 2 to 3 services on Sunday. Churches invite famous speakers from overseas and hold big meetings that were well attended. Friends will recommend you to attend this or that meeting. What could be wrong, you may ask.

Analect (of confucius sayings) chapter 1 verse 6:
Confusius says, "Young men honor their elders in the house and respect others in the society. They work with care and sincerity and become trustworthy. They love the common people and be closer with those with charitable hearts. After doing such, when they have more time and strength, then they study to pick up literature and other skills.

The key message is 先学会做人 后读书 .
Knowing how to behave as a person is foundation. Studying is secondary.

Or we can put it as, studying is for the purpose of behaving better.

Putting it into Christian context:

Behaving as a Christian is foundation. Rom 8:29 to be Christ-Like. or 2 Cor 3:3 We are living letters of Christ. Others read our behavior and come to know Christ.

Hearing Sermons is secondary. We hear Sermons (hopefully the preachers follow the Bible rightly) to behave more Christ-like.

If our behavior is not Christ-like, hearing more sermons may be just a cover-up of our guilt-conscience of not being Christ-like, We think we are more holy because we are hearing sermons. But the facts could be we are using them excuses to run away from our responsibilities .... e.g. to clean the house, to spend time with family members, to extend help to those in needs, to visit and comfort the sick, to even rest better that we can start the work week with better strength and clarity of thoughts .....

Hearing too many sermons without us living them out will just jam up our mind, dull our senses, escape our responsibilities, and bring us further away from Christ-likeness.

However, when our heart and conscious are clear, hearing a good sermon will encourage and refreshed us much. We can see our life in the sermon and the sermon in our life. Hearing out once and living them out repeatedly is the key for right Christian living as what Confucius tells us.

Lim Liat (c) 16-7-15

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