Thursday, March 28, 2013

Love God, Love People?

On Tuesday, I shared this article on Facebook. Yes, go ahead and read it.

I know, it's long. Go back and finish it. It's the only way to fully understand the context of this post. I'll wait here. 

Ok, first let me say I did not intend this as a political statement. Somehow I forgot didn't know that this whole thing with gay marriage is going on with the Supreme Court right now. I should stay more up to date, I know, and the next time the Supreme Court calls for my counsel I'll fit that into my schedule. 

Second, I didn't post it to condemn the friends I have on Facebook who live with their boyfriends. Not my agenda. 

Now that we have that out of the way I did post it because I love the message! I love the message that marriage and sex is something that God designed specifically to go together and that our world has crazily messed up both! I love the message that there is more to being feminine than being "hot." I loved how she defended not reading modern magazines and spoke against the message they contain. I love the compassion and love she portrayed toward those not following God's plan while she plainly spoke the truth. That's why I shared it on Facebook. 

Why does any of this matter? I would say it probably doesn't. I'm not so important that anybody pays too much attention to what I do on facebook or cares that much about my opinion. Several people liked the article and no one said anything negative to me. I'm talking about it now because I've been doing a lot of thinking and praying the past couple of days. 

I've seen status updates and pictures supporting gay marriage on Facebook. Most of the people posting these things claim the name "Christian." I've seen articles posted that ask "What if Jesus Meant All That Stuff?"  I've seen people proclaiming that God is love and we can just be nice to people and be a light. Yes, God is love. Love sent Jesus to the cross. 

But God is also holy. And God's holiness also sent Jesus to the cross. My sin cannot stand before God without Jesus. Your sin cannot stand before God without Jesus. It doesn't matter what the sins are. The Bible says if we are guilty of one we are guilty of all. 

Love alone is not enough. The guy that wrote that article about Jesus meaning that stuff? He didn't love his friend he mentioned at the end of the article. Love tells the truth...even when it hurts. Love must be balanced with truth. And the Bible plainly tells us we can know that we are going to heaven. 

Now I can understand someone who doesn't claim the name of Christ supporting this "love everyone and everything" philosophy. But a Christian should know how damaging this is.  One observation I've made over these few days is that even Christians don't care about what the Bible says. It's not our authority. It's not our guide. We don't even bother to read it. We call ourselves Christians and do whatever we please and feel good about ourselves. We're concerned with being accepted. We're concerned with being liked. We're concerned with not offending anyone. We're not concerned with truth. We're not concerned with people's eternal destinies. We're not concerned with winning the world (which is Jesus' passion, by the way. It was His last commandment to us.).

I've also noticed that the world in general thinks we are kooks. Crazy people in the wrong time era who are concerned with judging people and limiting other's freedoms. And you know what? I have to be ok with that. I have a non-confrontational personality. I was always of the opinion growing up that if I was nice people would like me. ALL people would like me. I've since been corrected, don't worry. We should be nice. But not so people will like us. We should be loving, joyful, peaceful. We should measure our words carefully. We should care for others and help them. But not so people will like us. We do that because Jesus commands us to. It's not supposed to be optional. "Oh, I don't like that part so I won't do it." There's no clause for that in the Bible. 

But we're also to be firm. Firm in our convictions. Firm in our beliefs. We don't need to march up to people and tell them they are going to hell. Or confront friends on their facebook wall about their lifestyle. But when asked, we should be able to give a clear defense of what we believe and why. We should teach those convictions to our children. Those convictions should guide our voting, our words, our entire lifestyle. People will notice even without you screaming at them. And that's why I probably wouldn't share that article if I had it to do over again. 

If I'm going to be considered weird, I want it to be real. I want to really be Christ-like if I'm going to claim the name "Christian". I want to be sold out for Jesus. I don't want to sit on the fence trying not to offend people and offending God instead. I may not be able to win them all but I do want to win some. I want my life to matter for God and it won't if I'm concerned with whether or not people think I'm weird for believing that or living a certain way. My life won't matter for God if I'm concerned with making sure people like me. But what if I'm concerned with helping people? What if I'm concerned with telling them the truth that Christ died for them? What if I'm concerned with speaking appropriately? With treating others with respect? What if I'm more concerned about pleasing God with my life than anything else I could ever think of?

God's people have lived in far worse times. The early church had a worse culture than we have now. They suffered intense persecution for being Christians. We don't face that in America like our fellow believers do in other parts of the world. The worst we are going to get is ridicule. Non-approval. Mockery. And I don't think "But they made fun of me!" is going to be a great excuse when we stand before Christ. Christ who bore our sins. Christ who was mocked. Christ who was ridiculed. 

So, yes, let's love others. But let's love God more. I can disagree with you and still love you. I can hold to my convictions and be kind to everyone. It's not how we treat our friends that shows our faith. It's how we treat those who don't agree with us. Live according to the Bible and let God be responsible for the results. 

1 comment:

  1. i ABSOLUTELY ADORE this post, everything about it. 'if im going to be considered weird, i want it to be real!' i LOVE that!