There are some who think their worldview is superior to Christianity, because they don’t need to be threatened with punishment in order to do the right thing. However, such idealism is unrealistic—as our overflowing jails attest. Sin-laden sinners, with desperately wicked hearts, are incapable of such noble motives. That’s why we have court systems that threaten punishment to lawbreakers. If we violate traffic rules we are punished by a ticket or even imprisonment. God has “wired” fallen sinners to respond to rewards and punishments. From the moment we are born, we have the ability to respond positively to a smile and negatively to a frown. We respond positively to incentives. We work toward a wage, run to win the medal, and climb to reach the highest peak. We also avoid certain behaviors because they come with a threat of punishment. Without fear of punishment, every man would do what is right in his own eyes.
Finalist, ECPA 2012 Christian Book Awards.
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