Speaking of Life 5018 | Two Kinds of People in the World
Have you ever heard someone say, “There are two kinds of people in the world”? This is usually followed by a joke or some oversimplified statement about people.
Here is one that does both: “There are two kinds of people in the world. Those who put everyone into two groups… and those who don’t.”
Well, I guess that was someone’s attempt to make fun of the idea of dividing people into two groups. But it’s no laughing matter when people are depersonalized by such groupings. Surely there is more to being an individual than the generalizations often attached to group labels.
Some group labels do have an element of truth to them: “There are two kinds of people in the world. Those who live as if they belong to Christ, and those who don’t.” This is similar to a “two kinds of people in the world” statement found in the Bible.
Although it is not worded exactly like that, let’s notice how Paul puts it in the book of Romans.
For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
Romans 8:6-9 (ESV)
Unlike many “two kinds of people in the world” statements, this one is not depersonalizing. In fact, it is intended to do just the opposite. Paul can make this division between two groups because he is basing it on reality. When God came in human form, he chose all of humanity. All people were created to belong to Christ and have abundant life in him.
But not everyone believes that or wants it yet. However, there is no other option left for us. We either live by the truth of who we were created to be, or we choose to live a lie, which amounts to no life at all. So, Paul is encouraging us to embrace the life we have in Christ and live it out. That is a personalizing life. That is a meaningful life that carries forward into eternity.
Paul reminds us that no matter how many kinds of people there are, there is no life outside our life in Christ, who is continuing to pursue, draw, and embrace all of humanity to himself. Embrace the one who has embraced you.
I’m Greg Williams, Speaking of Life.