Three times in the last week I have heard someone say something about Karma. Then twice last week I read about Karma on Facebook. Interestingly enough, some of the people who have used this word would call themselves believers in the God of the Bible.
Their words inspired me to write a few lines about why I do not believe in Karma.
First, Karma is from Hinduism and Buddhism. It is not a Christian belief. We need to be careful about importing other religions into our thinking. Let me expands that idea in this second point.
Second, Karma is defined as “a person’s actions deciding their fate in the future.” The idea is simple. You do good things and good things will happen to you. You do bad things and bad things will happen to you.
At first this seems very logical, but there is a problem with this from a Christian perspective. God’s word actually teaches that all of us are evil. We all sin. We all like sheep have gone astray. All of our righteous acts are like dirty rags. If we do something good, but only do it to get a reward later then we are just being selfish. All of our best attempts at being good people are flawed in their very core.
Christianity doesn’t teach Karma. Christianity teaches grace. The concept is rooted in the idea that we do NOT get what we deserve. When we choose to reject God, He still accepts us. When we break God’s laws, He offers forgiveness and not retaliation. When we hurt other people, God offers love to us. Christianity reminds me daily that my past actions do not determine my future, God’s past actions on the cross do.
As a follower of Jesus my life is rooted in grace. It sets me free from the past and it allows me to set you free also. I can let go of my desire to get even. I can let go of the hope that somehow you will get payback. I wish you well, in spite of your bad actions.
While it may be popular to sprinkle the word Karma into our Facebook posts and conversations, it is not a type of thinking I want to enter my life. I want to be a person of grace and not Karma.