John Alan Turner

Writer, Theologian, Consultant, Speaker, Teacher

It Depends on Your Definition of "Everything"

Okay, I'll admit it. I do a lot of complaining on this blog. In fact, a lot of people use their blogs to grumble and criticize, and some of that is actually healthy. There is such a thing as "Divine Discontent." And yet.... I abuse that phrase. Sometimes I complain because I want people to think I'm perceptive. Sometimes I complain because there is a longstanding tradition of smart people who criticize, and I want to align myself with smart people. Sometimes I complain because I secretly hope someone out there will remedy the cause of my complaining (which is all too often financial in nature). And yet....

Saint Paul says in the New Testament, "Do everything without complaining or arguing" (Philippians 2:14).

Now, I understand most of the arguments for and against Pauline literature and theology. I've read the cases for and against various theories of inspiration. I know the difference between the Word of God and the Words of God. I think I have a handle on grace -- at least in theory. And yet....

Saint Paul says in the New Testament, "Do everything without complaining or arguing" (Philippians 2:14).

Just to be sure, I checked on the definition of the Greek word translated "everything." Turns out the word translated "everything" means...everything.

Well, who's ready to volunteer for that? Frankly, I'm not sure I can do it. But here's what I'm willing to try. I'm going to try to make tomorrow a complaint-free zone. Anyone with me?