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Dallas Willard on Taking Jesus Seriously

Historically, conservative Christians became suspicious of any talk of Jesus as "teacher" because liberals, or "Modernists," used it as a way of saying that he was not the divine Son and supernatural savior but "just a good man." In addition, their understanding of salvation by grace alone cut off from the "essentials" in Christian faith his teachings about life and God’s kingdom. As we have seen, being a Christian then comes to have nothing to do with the kind of person one is. The Modernists, by contrast, professed to regard him as a great teacher. But then they presented him as fundamentally mistaken about major elements of his own message, such as when his kingdom would come, and they explained away all his sayings and deeds that required supernatural interaction, his teachings and practice of prayer, for example. Thus they made it impossible in practice to take him seriously as a teacher.


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