10.22.2008

Moderation


In Ecclesiastes 7.16-18, Solomon writes:

“Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise—why destroy yourself? Do not be overwicked, and do not be a fool—why die before your time? It is good to grasp the one and not let go of the other. The man who fears God will avoid all extremes.”
Those verses come in the context of a longer passage on wisdom, and Solomon suggests that avoiding extremes is a wise thing to do.

Generally speaking, I consider myself to be a moderate sort of guy.

Politically, there are a few issues that I am very, very conservative on, but for the most part, I’m not dead-set on a lot of things and can see both sides of a lot of issues.

Religiously, in the broad spectrum of Christianity, I would certainly be considered conservative, but in my specific religious fellowship, I’m pretty much in the middle (in the past, I would’ve thought I was pretty conservative, but over the last few years, I’ve come into contact with more and more people who have verified my middle-of-the-road-ness).

I say all that to say this: the problem with moderation is that when you’re in the middle, you have to deal with the people on both extremes.

It can be a frustrating endeavor.

4 comments:

Alex 10/22/08, 2:57 PM  

Moderation is difficult, but it is one of the concepts I see in Jesus. He associated with and dealt with both extremes, as you said. Looking through a lens of how to emulate Christ, balance is something worth striving for.

Justin and Heather Bland 10/23/08, 9:13 AM  

man, I love that passage in Ecclesiastes. That entire book is phenomenal: one of my favorites.

Great post

Luke 10/23/08, 5:23 PM  

Alex,

I agree. Of course, when you look at Jesus, there are certain issues that He was certainly not moderate about (personal purity, discipleship, etc.), but generally, I think Jesus was incredibly balanced all-around.

Luke 10/23/08, 5:25 PM  

Justin,

Yeah, there's a lot of great stuff in Ecclesiastes. Reading through the book seems like pretty compelling evidence that the author was someone who was pretty wise (whether it was actually Solomon or not).

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