From Douglas Wilson, Woke with the Win-Wams woke: “Let us define our terms. Being woke means that you have grokked to your complicity. Let me start over. Being woke means that you have come to realize that you (and better yet, your parents and teachers) are guilty, guilty, guilty of all kinds of nefarious things, to be itemized later, and that you have resolved to atone, atone, atone for all your guiltitudinous privileges, and you are going to do so by trembling on the lip of being woke, woke, woke, and if you ever start to slip back into your somnolent white supremacy or your torpid male privilege, then you will just pinch yourself and peddle, peddle, peddle, yes, harder, harder, harder. (my comment, I think he means pedal, rather than peddle, harder). Self-salvation, in other words. Described another way, self-salvation is a maelstrom of guilt, works, envy, slavery, snobbery, and lust.
“But there are two basic kinds of religion in the world—one predicated on grace, and all the others predicated on performance. In the former, all the glory goes to God, and the liberty goes to the forgiven sinner. In the latter, the glory, such as it is, goes to the sinner, who turns out to be god in this system, and the glory is solemnly pronounced over the chains that have been made to shine like silver, but which still rattle and clank for all that.
“Those ways of salvation that are predicated on performance have to figure out a way to turn failure into fuel. This is necessary because, since we are incorrigible sinners, failure is a given. Consequently, failure becomes the energy that drives everything. And that is why modern secular forms of self-salvation are a toxic mixture of guilt, shame, and fear. By modern secular forms of self-salvation, I am referring to racial wokeness, gender wokeness, enviro-wokeness, foodie wokeness, gun-control wokeness, and all the rest of it. Guilt is the raw energy for these religions, but it exists in the form of crude in the ground. After it has gone through the social justice refineries (which smell like nothing on earth), what we have is rage by the barrel.
“A prisoner chained to the wall who sees another prisoner walking away free can go in two directions. He can seek liberty himself, on the same terms that his freed brother got it (“Tell me the gospel! Take me with you!”), or he can resent the freedom the other has and seek ways to re-enslave him. This is the way of envy, and many choose it. Given the fact that the gospel frees us from real sins, and the enslaved don’t like reminders of real sins anyway, what they do is cook up a host of fake sins, manufactured sins. Like the deep and grievous sin of not being “woke.” They have generated a thick fog of legalisms.”
I want to add my own observations. if you paid attention to (assuming you read it) my post worldviews on the major world religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Secular Humanism) two things are evident in relation to Pastor Wilson’s post: other than Christianity, all the other religions are “salvation”–such as it is–through works, placing the practitioner of the religion in the center (the “god of the system” as Wilson said); the various “woke” forms of self salvation are all part of Secular Humanism. Some forms of internal guilt can, within reasonable boundaries, lead to improvements in life. Greater awareness of preserving our environment, improving our nutrition, being more conscious about misuse of guns, respecting women and loving all races are valuable in their proper contexts. They become “toxic” when carried to the extremes of making them secular religions.
Even more toxic are the perversions of(?) works religions that preach salvation by the act that represents the ultimate usurpation of God’s prerogative–taking of life. If your religion preaches killing unbelievers as the surest path to salvation, I question what makes you think you are worthy of salvation? Even if I don’t single out one religion for this perversion, how many of you would not know which one I am referring to? I wonder how many of us, if we are brutally honest with ourselves, refrain from preaching murder outwardly while thinking murder inwardly. There is yet a higher standard than merely saying the right things.
“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Matthew 5:21-24.