Many people operate on the system of karma.
The term “good karma” is used in everyday speech in the Western world. Philosophies of religion infiltrate our culture without most people even realizing it. People will use phrases and have beliefs from various religions, but many cannot even explain how we came to know them.
Karma is the idea that whatever good you put out there will be returned upon you. So, if you are good, then good things happen to you, and if you are bad, bad things happen to you.
The world does seem to operate on a sowing and reaping system. Even Newton's 3rd law of motion says, "To every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction."
The problem with karma, though, is that we cannot manipulate God. I've known people who love Jesus, live upright, are good human beings, and they die or have the most horrible things in the world happen to them. And I have known wicked people who have lived lavishly off the wealth they acquired through wickedness.
Tullian Tchividjian writes, “The truth is that when you and I insist on that all-too-comfortable paradigm of cosmic score keeping, we’re no longer talking about Christianity. In fact, what we reveal is that we've adopted (unwittingly) a Westernized form of Hinduism. We are talking, in other words, about karma. If you are a bad person and things are going well for you, it is only a matter of time before karma catches up with you and ‘you get yours.’ If you are good person, the inverse is true: just be patient and your good deeds will come back to you. This is a simplification of the complex Hindu understanding of history as determined by the past lives of others: that we are all stuck in an eternal cycle of suffering perpetuated by reincarnation.”
In religion, you get what you deserve. It is the same with karma. Karma is all about getting what you deserve. Grace is the opposite of karma.
Tchividjian continues, “On the opposite end of our natural tendency to moralize life and suffering stands the counter-intuitive affirmation of Christianity. Christianity affirms that Jesus severed the link between suffering and deserving once for all on Calvary. God put the ledgers away and settled the accounts. The good news of the gospel is NOT that good people get good stuff. It’s not that life is cyclical and that “what comes around goes around.” Rather, it’s that the bad get the best, the worst inherit the wealth, and the slave becomes a son (Rom.5:8).”
As Christians, we believe in Christ, not karma. We believe that Christ rules over our lives, not karma.