We don’t like it, but what is its importance?
Posted by Rod Neufeld on February 18, 2016
As Christians we are faced with many things we don’t like. There are situations and lifestyles that we know are contrary to the will and word of God. Our struggle with these things can range from irritation to overwhelming frustration. I face this every day am slowly beginning to understand that, as with anything in life, we must set priorities. The struggle is determining the standard for those priorities.
It is interesting to note that the standard we receive from Christ contains “absolutes” and “judgment”. What is more interesting is His dealing with sin and disobedience. Jesus
treated everyone according to their understanding.
People caught in sinful situations saw a huge amount of grace from our saviour. For example, there was a woman who had been caught in adultery, a sin punishable by death according to the Law:
“When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” John 8:10-12 KJV
The religious rulers of the day, Pharisees and Sadducees, supposedly had a greater understanding of the law and its purpose. They received a much harsher rebuke from Christ. When they confronted Jesus, he responded this way:
“O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” Matthew 12:34-37 KJV
You can see the contrast in the manner in how Christ dealt with people and their sin. Keep in mind he did point out their sin. The world does not judge sin because it doesn’t know God’s standard! The world only knows the standard it created to replace God’s.
With all this being said I came up with three points:
1. If your church practices fluffy love and avoids the reality of judgment and hell, there may be a problem.
2. If your church is so consumed with judgment and hunting down sin and sinners that there is no room for grace, there may be a problem.
3. If your church is focused on reaching out to the lost, helping drifting Christians restore their relationship with Christ and wants to be a positive influence on the community, you most likely don’t have a problem. That’s not to say it’s a perfect place that may cause you some grief once and a while. The key is the focus on what is truly important.
God hates sin, this is a fact. The Bible contains all of the examples we need to know. God loves His creation and wants to restore His relationship with us. Jesus deals with each of us on an individual basis. He does it in an appropriate manner one that speaks directly to the individual.
We don’t need to spend our days looking for sin around every corner, we know it’s there. We need to look for ways to reach the lost, restore the wayward and lift up the oppressed. Instead of judging everybody by standards that they either don’t know or don’t understand. We need to reach them with the Gospel, not with scowls and pointing fingers. The fact of the matter is the final Judgment is all Christ’s.
So, go out there, be discerning and wise, love one another in truth, show grace, mercy and righteous judgment. We want the world to see Christ, not us. We are to be a reflection of Christ.
What do you think He wants the world to see and hear when we speak?
“Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to resent you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” Jude 1:21-25 KJV