Handbook on Faith, Hope, and Love: Lesson 5, question 4

bdv4's picture

4. Augustine states that we should not see alms-giving as "buying off" God. Are there any other practices which we personally do which we see implicitly as "buying off" God? How could we modify our lives to exclude them?

JeffLogan's picture

I think it comes from here...

A reply to:

Where does this come from?
Submitted by lawrence_dicostanzo on Mon, 2010-01-25 18:20.

LD asked;

"Where do you think the attitude of buying off God comes from? Do you think it's natural to mankind? Is it from the way we're taught religion as children?"

Jeff replies;

I think it is our nature. Perhaps we don't like to be indebted, controlled, or dependent. Lot's of reason perhaps. Maybe others have ideas. But it is also learned, I believe. Think about Santa Claus. Or, maybe you had a 'carrot' parent who held the car keys over your head or something similar.

I believe a parent should teach their child to obey because of love, not threatenings. And, I believe that sometimes its okay to have your child disobey if that opportunity provides a good lesson. But I also believe parents should have rules and apply them evenly and consistently. Not sternly but firmly. And, yes, sometimes forgiving and forgoing the punishment depending upon the circumstances. But that would have to be carefully monitored if you have more than one child. Two children born of the same parents can respond in totally different ways to rules and punishment and parents need to understand the differences. I believe the worst thing you can do is break the child's spirit by being too stern and inflexible--you don't want a zombie. Perhaps equally bad is to drive them to rebellion by too many rules which they cannot meet. I think its good to have rules you child can easily fulfill. If its not that important, don't make it a rule. KIS--Keep It Simple.

This is not professional advice and that is my disclaimer. Though I think it is wise. It is fashioned around how I view God's relationship with us as His children. What do you think?

    “The path of true piety is so plain as to require
    but little political direction.” --George Washington,
    re: absence of "Jesus Christ" in

    _______ _______ ______ ______ ______

    “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you."