Spiritual things are good. Earthly things are bad. Right? Wrong.
And not only wrong, but dangerously wrong. This is popularly called dualism, this idea that the spiritual things are sacred and natural things profane. It’s easy to slip into if you are a Christian, and the fall can be devastating to your destiny.
The danger with dualism is it induces Christians to withdraw from the world. If earthly things are unholy, then Christians are better off just staying in their churches and prayer meetings and not getting involved in the world, lest they be corrupted by it.
This leads to a self-fulfilling prophecy because when the yeast is removed from the dough it falls. When the salt is removed, the food has no flavor. When the light is removed, only darkness remains.
If matter is bad, unholy, why did Jesus take on matter by coming in human flesh? The incarnation is the death blow to dualism.
Also, God created the world, i.e. matter, and said it was “very good.” (Genesis 1:31). “For God so loved the world, that he gave His one and only Son…” (John 3:16). And, by the way, not all spiritual things are good or holy. How about demons (rebellious angels) and particularly Satan?
All Christians are called to be salt and light. (Matthew 5:13-14). This means it is the destiny of Christians to be involved in the world. Thus, to embrace dualism is to undermine one’s destiny.
Jesus prayed to the Father that He not take Christians out of the world (John 17:15) but instead, “As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.” (John 17:18). It is world system, its way of thinking and behaving, to which Christians are not to be conformed. (Romans 12:2). Christians are not to abandon the world but to change it.
Recognize the error of dualism and reject it. It’s a destiny-killer. GS