In Why do you call me good?, I mentoned that Christians are often not any closer than Jews to the mark when it comes to the seriousness of sin; for example, Helmut Thielicke (and Philip Yancey, who quotes Thielicke approvingly in his “What is so amazing about Grace,” Zondervan, 1997, p. 175). Here is Thielicke:
“When Jesus loved a guilt-laden person and helped him, he saw in him an erring child of God. He saw in him a human being whom his Father loved and grieved over because he was going wrong. He saw him as God originally designed and meant him to be, and therefore he saw through the surface layer of grime and dirt to the real man underneath” (Helmut Thielicke, “Christ and the meaning of life,” Grand Rapids, Baker, 1975, p. 41). (My emphasis).
Two interrelated questions: First, who is Thielicke (and Yancey) addressing? Second, what does Thielicke mean…
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