Sometimes it’s difficult to be a Christian in today’s world. The world is so full of hatred, we can hardly pick up a newspaper or turn on a TV news program without hearing about Muslim terrorists committing atrocities against Jews and Christians—and even other Muslims who don’t happen to be of their particular sect.
Or people rioting and burning down businesses belonging to people who have done them no harm—just because they hate. Or people killing innocent babies before they’re even born, just because their birth would be inconvenient.
Most of us have a natural urge somewhere down inside of us to express our own hatred toward these people. Motivated by a desire to see them receive the punishment they deserve for their deeds, we want to vent our scorn in no uncertain terms. I’m guilty of this, and I suspect many of you are also.
But this is not what we as Christians are called to do. We have a criminal justice system which is charged with responsibility for prosecuting and convicting those who commit crimes, and we have intelligence and defense agencies to protect us against foreign invasion and acts of terrorism. It’s not our place to condemn and heap invective upon such people.
Paul made the following statement in Galatians 5:22:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness
These things are what the world should see when looking at us. Exhibiting these traits reflects Jesus. When people see us displaying such things in the face of all the wrong going on in today’s world, it makes them stop and think. It sets us apart and makes people around us think maybe there is something to this Christianity business.
On the other hand, when we return hatred for hatred, scorn for scorn, we give the world reason to say Christians are no different from anyone else. Rather than drawing them to the cross, we repel them from it. Is this the effect we want to have on the people around us?
In fairness, I must admit I don’t always practice what I preach on this. My mouth frequently gets going before the Holy Spirit gets control. How about you?
If you abide in Me and My word abides in you, then you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.
For more information about David N. Walker, click the “About” tab above.
For more information about his books, click on “Books” above.
Contact him at dnwalkertx (at) gmail (dot) com or tweet him at @davidnwalkertx.