When Black and White Fade to Grey

6 10 2008

This song is from Casting Crowns and is called Slow Fade. It’s about marital faithfulness but the principle can be applied to all of life: “It’s a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray.” 

Christianity is not a religion that is practiced. But it’s more than a relationship with Jesus Christ too. It’s a worldview that believes there is no area to which God has not spoken. Some areas, He speaks directly (life, marriage, etc) and are black and white. Other areas (education, healthcare, etc) are gray and require biblical application of principles to discern what God’s view is.

To simplify things, believers don’t get to decide what is black and white. That is what the bible is for. But many liberals Christians today, just like the Pharisees did, are challenging the very principles we should be agreeing and standing on. In essence, all believers should read the same bible, agree on black and white issues and debate on the best method to take a stand while showing love. Instead, Christians are forced to regress by modern-day Pharisees to discuss what sin is and by what standard we arrive at the decision.

During His time on earth, Jesus was hardest on the Pharisees, the group of “liberal believers” that challenged his principles while the disciples and other believers were discussing the best methods with Him. Now, it may appear to some that Jesus didn’t love the Pharisees because of how harshly He dealt with them. But He loved them just as much. He just couldn’t tolerate them leading His flock astray. But that is what liberal Christians have done to the body of Christ today. So when Christians take a stand on an issue, it shouldn’t be misconstrued as “hate.” It’s love in action. A different love than… say, with orphans, but love nonetheless. A love that is needed from Christians in a time when our fellow brethren are turning against us. 

Here are the lyrics:

Be careful little eyes what you see
It’s the second glance that ties your hands as darkness pulls the strings
Be careful little feet where you go
For it’s the little feet behind you that are sure to follow

It’s a slow fade when you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray 
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It’s a slow fade, it’s a slow fade

Be careful little ears what you hear
When flattery leads to compromise, the end is always near
Be careful little lips what you say
For empty words and promises lead broken hearts astray

It’s a slow fade when you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray 
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day

The journey from your mind to your hands
Is shorter than you’re thinking
Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking

It’s a slow fade when you give yourself away
It’s a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
Daddies never crumble in a day
Families never crumble in a day

Oh be careful little eyes what see
Oh be careful little eyes what you see
For the Father up above is looking down in love
Oh be careful little eyes what you see

May we have the courage to accept principles and debate methods, even when it’s unpopular.

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20 responses

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==[T]he Pharisees…were the utmost of conservatives and were so focused on black and white that they completely missed the shades of gray…”You have heard it said (black and white) but I say to you…”(gray!!!).==

Soooo, to YOU, what Jesus said was a shade of gray?????

Nope. Not true.

The Pharisees focused on black and white: Religion. They said that the Law is the only way to Heaven.

Jesus focused on black and white: Grace. He said that He is the only Way to the Father.

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==”You have heard it said (black and white) but I say to you…”(gray!!!).==

No, “You have heard it said [black and white] but I say to you [black and white]…”

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==I guess you would actually pluck out your eye or cut off your right hand if either offended you.==

Jesus said that scoffers wouldn’t understand what He said.

==Please don’t respond to me again.==

That’s not the way it works here.

== You are horribly unintelligent…==

Translation: “I don’t agree with you, and, so, that means that you don’t know what you’re talking about.”

==…and lack basic skills in multi-level thinking.==

The Lord is my Shepherd, not you.

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==I guess you would actually pluck out your eye or cut off your right hand if either offended you.==

Explain how they would offend me. They’d have to have a mind of their own in order to do that.

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==Please don’t respond to me again.==

(Mat 8:29) And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time?

(Mar 1:24) Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.

(Luk 4:34) Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art; the Holy One of God.

6 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

== You are horribly unintelligent…==

The Devil tells me that, too. I ignore him, too:

Romans 8:1

6 10 2008
Truth and Reason

Pete, in one sense, the Pharisees were too focused on the law, thus missing the Messiah they thought was still forthcoming. But the point of this is showing how Jesus dealt with the believers who caused Him the most division. Hence the “modern-day Pharisee” of today being the liberal Christian.

7 10 2008
pzefo3

The problem is when we try to make black and white assertions based on allegory, poetry, Jewish dietary laws, parables, etc.

Yes, there are some clear directives in Scripture that are unquestionably black and white. However, we would be guilty of doing exactly what the Pharisees did if we try to ignore what are intentional gray areas.

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==The problem is when we try to make black and white assertions based on allegory, poetry, Jewish dietary laws, parables, etc.==

Jesus was intolerant; He said that He is the ONLY Way to the Father, and everything else He said revolves around THAT. With Him, there are no gray areas. There is also no gray area where He says that one MUST be born again, that, if one is no, that one doesn’t find the narrow gate.

==…we would be guilty of doing exactly what the Pharisees did if we try to ignore what are intentional gray areas.==

Examples of what YOU say are the “gray areas” of the teachings, of the Word of God, that apply to those who are born again? Tell us, too, where God is also wishy-washy/indifferent concerning those who are not born again.

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==…we would be guilty of doing exactly what the Pharisees did if we try to ignore what are intentional gray areas.==

“Gray areas” suggests that you think God is not specific in His Word, in His offer of Reconciliation to Man, that men may take what He says one way, or the other, and still get to Heaven, that there are “loopholes” in the Word of God. Care to point out what these “loopholes” are?

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==The problem is when we…==

Who’s this “we”?

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==…there are some clear directives in Scripture…==

So, in YOUR world, God didn’t think through most of Scripture, gave us an incomplete Word, is THAT it, leaving us confused? You sow the seed that He is the Author of confusion, eh?

7 10 2008
sarahjbradfield

Wow….I definitely didn’t read that entire argument, but I think it is sad that two Christians are fighting and making it personal on a blog….now that is an area where Jesus DID give us black and white instructions: Love one another.

I think that the Pharisees were extremely conservative, and that they were more concerned with practicing the scriptures precisely than with living their lives in love. They were also consumed with Jewish tradition, which sometimes was more important to them than God’s law. Jesus was the liberal! Jesus was the one totally coming in and changing things according to the way it should be. For example, when the adulterous woman was about to be stoned (which according to law and tradition, was what was supposed to happen), Jesus was the one who stepped in and went against the law. Jesus also ignored the law when he healed the sick on the Sabbath. The Pharisees tried to use anything that Jesus did against him, even though Jesus was totally righteous in his decision making. So many Pharisees tried to stump him using the law, but Jesus had a way higher way of thinking that always left them scratching their heads.

Anyway, I agree with you that most things are black and white, and the things that aren’t, we should be using scripture and applying that to the gray areas of our lives. However, it is a lot more complicated in society, because a lot of Christians hold different values, based on many things- and mostly based on their influences. That doesn’t necessarily mean Christians who are more democratic are being led astray.

All that said….this song is really beautiful and sad, and reminds me of my childhood.

7 10 2008
Truth and Reason

Several others have made the same point about the Pharisees being overly conservative and sticking to the law to the point that they completely missed their Messiah. I agree with that, but I am using the metaphor, “modern-day Pharisee” to describe liberal Christians because they are challenging principles and not methods, resulting in more harm than good.

Christians do hold different values that are a product of their influences, but is that biblical? Does the bible teach that followers of Christ should be in unison on their core beliefs or disagreement? If we can’t agree on cornerstone principles, we’ll never make it to the methods, such as how God moves today and spiritual gifts. We’ll be stuck debating what is actually sin and what values should be held as absolutes. I think the bible is clear on a short list of absolutes and these should be across the board the same with every Christian, regardless of background, upbringing, and influences.

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==it is sad that two Christians are fighting and making it personal on a blog…==

Who’s “fighting”? Who’s making it “personal”? I know that I’m posting what I know I have before me. Otrhers are posting what they have before them. There is much disagreeement. The Holy Spirit can[t be tellin’ me one thing and them another. So, I guess we’ll just have to wait until Judgment Day to find out who got it correct. I’m not waiting until JD, though.

==…now that is an area where Jesus DID give us black and white instructions: Love one another. ==

What’s “love,” biblically?

7 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==Jesus was the liberal! ==

No, He wasn’t. He was intolerant. He still is. His Way is the ONLY Way.

8 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==I’m making it personal. ==

Things are tough all over.

==I really think Mr. I is clueless!==

You think that, huh. So what?

8 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==I really think Mr. I is clueless!==

Translation: “I got nothing substantive to say and I don’t wanna let Mr. Incredible get away with the last word. So, I will make some noise, bark, like a dog.”

8 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==I really think Mr. I is clueless!==

You’re never about explanations, only accusations.

10 10 2008
Mr. Incredible

==…it may appear to some that Jesus didn’t love the Pharisees because of how harshly He dealt with them. But He loved them just as much. ==

(Pro 27:5) Open rebuke is better than secret love.

(Rev 3:19) As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

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