“Greatness in the kingdom of God is measured in terms of obedience.” John StottI know obedience is greatly praised in Christian circles, but something about the way this was stated really made me step back and take notice. In "the kingdom of God", your greatness is measured with obedience. So more obedience translates directly to more greatness. If obedience is the measurement of greatness, nothing else matters. More obedience means more greatness, nothing else plays into it.
— unifellowship (@unifellowships) June 11, 2013
I'm sure the Christians would say that obedience would entail doing great things and therefore this makes perfect sense. But even looking from that perspective, the cause and effect is wrong. You are great because you are obedient, and you do great things because you are obedient, but you are not great because you do great things. And of course this only works if you are only ever ordered to do great things. If you are ever ordered to do things that aren't so great, this falls apart.
This got me thinking about what else Christians are saying about obedience so I did a search for it on twitter. This was the first one that caught my attention
Spiritual maturity isnt measured by how high you jump in praise but how straight you walk in obedience.Apparently maturity is also measured by obedience. If you are more obedient you are more spiritually mature. I find this funny because I would typically argue the opposite, obedience is an important attribute when you are immature, but the more experience you have the less obedience becomes important. A child needs to obey their parents, there is a lot going on in the world and they can't process everything and avoid dangers, as they get older and more mature, they can watch out for themselves and obedience is less of an issue, in fact at some point pure obedience becomes a detriment, you need to become your own person and separate from your parents. Another example, when it is your first day at a new job you need to follow instructions until you learn the ropes. But obedience isn't the pinnacle, at some point you should be making decisions and giving other people instructions. The idea that obedience = maturity is completely backwards, it doesn't work in any other place in life. What really struck me about this tweet is it was retweeted 241 times. Apparently it really resonated with people.
— JESUS SAVES (@Godly_Life) June 11, 2013
I have one more tweet I want to share from this quick little search I did
Understanding can wait, but obedience can't.This is really the crux of it. Perhaps you will understand later, whatever, just obey. You don't need to know what is going on, just do what "God" wants you to do. I saw this tweet right when it was posted, but it was retweeted while I was writing, again, this message resonates. It's more faith isn't it? Don't worry about what's going on, you don't need to understand things, just have faith and obey.
— VANESSA RUTH Q CHAN (@vanny_chan) June 12, 2013