Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more…
We will in all likelihood find it impossible to see change in one another on a day-to-day or even a week-to-week basis. Genuine growth happens slowly, like trees, and not everyone is even a healthy tree in the first place.
Leave as you are – because you have been eternally and completely loved beyond all measure by the God who is Real, no matter what. You have not simply been forgiven – you have been justified.
There is a profound level of cognitive dissonance in the standard atheist position. The hallmark of the atheist viewpoint is rationality. Yet, if there is no supreme intelligence, no design, no rational plan at the root of existence, why would rationality be of any use in discerning the nature of things?
Here’s the real issue: do you really think that your strong moral stance is going to convince sinners to reform? Your harsh rejection is going to inspire them to get right? Isn’t that a little bit like the terrorists thinking that bombing the World Trade Center towers would help the cause of Islam? Mercy and kindness and acceptance and forgiveness are the things that lead us to repentance.
You either operate under threat of punishment or you operate under unbreakable one-way love. These are two different universes, two different kingdoms. Which do you believe is true?
If there was a movie scene where someone was actually washing up with blood, I think we would say that the filmmakers had really gone too far. It is a metaphor of horror. Yet this is a central and somehow beautiful tenet of the Christian faith. How could this be? Why would any intelligent sane person believe such things?
How is it that people make behavioral repentance a condition to salvation, and still call Him a savior? What is saving?