At Grace Bible Church, we find a great challenge with what we call the “meeism.” Meeism is the predominant theme in the world today. It dominates our lives in a variety of fashions. Simply counting the number of times we use the word “I” in a day would be a humbling experience for the most unassuming of people. We are all about, well, “the me.”
Okay, enough of the clichés and catch phrases. What is meism. I suspect many of you already know where we are headed. I think we should be thorough though and define “meeism” before we get to far ahead of ourselves.
First though it could be, Meeism is not necessarily arrogant. Meeism can take on a level of humility, or a conciliatory appearance. These attitudes are only permitted in Meeism as long as it feeds the core, me. We submit to our supervisors at work. We don’t steal from others. We submit to an authority to complete a project. We even help people out when it makes us feel good about ourselves and what we’ve done. Meeism therefore can be magnanimous in appearance even though it is something wholly different. (1 Samuel 16:7; 2 Corinthians 5:12)
Second, Meeism is not necessarily atheistic or without belief, it may even claim faith in god. The difference between real faith in God and Meeism faith is, well me. Meeism faith takes doctrine and conforms it to the individual. Meeism believes in me. Meesim is presented clearly in Philippians 2:21, “For they all seek after their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.” Meeism faith develops its own set of beliefs and claims god is that way. Meeism reads the Bible and conforms it to self. Meeism makes the Gospel about Christian liberty instead of making Christian liberty about the Gospel. Meeism conforms doctrine relative to personally developed beliefs. Meeism is a god unto themselves (Genesis 3:5). Meeism may even be arrogant enough to think it can literally own its own world in the future. Meeism can believe they are a god, or a god unto themselves. Either way it is still about “me.”
Third, Meeism is not necessarily outwardly bold or narcissistic nor is the rebellion in Meeism easily seen or understood. Quiet rebellion seems meek in appearance and is very timid in function. Inside there is a seething resentment for the actual circumstances one must submit too. (Luke 15:25-30) Further, Meeism takes on an air of authority that develops from this inner pride. (Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 1:21-22)
Fourth, Meeism is a natural function of man’s heart that strives for its own desires in all things. (Romans 7:14-22) In this way, the natural tendency is to make all things about self, orient all things to benefit self, seek only with things that are perceived as enjoyable for self. One attends worship not to worship God and submit to His Biblical precepts of worship. One attends church for personal spiritual development/enrichment, enjoyment of the praise/worship music/people/pastor, not because of doctrinal purity. Church attendance is not for God’s glory, but for personal need or a perceived family need (it’s good for the kids). I’m comfortable here.
These are the baseline elements of Meeism. They are very closely related. They are all relative. Each individual has their own Meeism and each Meeism has its own individual. They are all about personal faith and dependent upon ones self-determined perceptions of God. Though frequently misguided or just plain wrong, individuals develop their own understanding of scripture and it always comes down to what they personally perceive, understand or desire. Beliefs are communicated too, but not necessarily believed by others. Scripture calls these people false teachers (2 Peter 2:1-3) Finally, tied to false teachers, Meeism makes sense to us because we can personalize it. I like my world because everyone here likes me. We are comfortable with Meeism because we can live with whatever Meeism produces, or change what we do not like. It is pliable. Meeism helps our victim-hood, our sense of authority and promotes the delusion of control. We can do whatever we want with Meeism, it becomes our personal deity.
How applicable is our ancient Bible concerning today’s “Meeism?” Consider this passage with respect to society’s challenges and government leadership/operations:
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
Definition: Meeism is our personal ethos as it develops, conforms to personal circumstance, relates to individual faith, promotes an attitude to authority based on perceived needs, desires and individual cogitation. Meeism is life personalized regardless of truth, the world’s view of individual life. (Jeremiah 16:20; 1 John 2:16)
Meeism is the antithesis of Jesus Christ in all things (2 Corinthians 5:19; Titus 2:14) Where God gave himself fully for all mankind, Meesim gives only for self, sees only self, feeds only self. See Philippians 2:4 as opposed to verses five through eight. God (Jesus) humbled himself left Heaven came to this world, gave up His rightful place in perfection to be among the imperfect. Only God can forgive sin (Mark 2:5-7). Jesus forgave sin. He is sinless. Jesus is God. Jesus the perfect gave himself to atone for the imperfect. It is not about me, it is about Him.