It’s one thing to say you’re a Christian; it’s another thing to actually walk the walk, especially when another Christian catches you in the wrong and calls you out of your comfort zone. What if another Christian is calling you to repentance in an area where you don’t think you’re wrong?
Some sins are obvious: sexual immorality, jealousy, gossip, slander, hatred, impurity, murder and the like (Galatians 5:19-21).
These areas are black and white. As long as you’re not killing anyone or breaking the law, you’re good, right? What about some gray areas? Is it ok to have sex before marriage? Is it ok to smoke if you’re a Christian? How about a cuss word every now and then, especially when you’re angry? To a devout Christian, this may be a no-brainer: of course you’re not supposed to do the above-mentioned things, but the mainstream religious culture of our day has so watered down the Bible that it’s as though morality is merely a societally subjective issue. Is this topic debatable?
“So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.” ~ Ephesians 4:17-19
“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what is known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.” ~ Romans 1:18-19
“But now that you know God – or rather are known by God – how is it that you are returning back to those weak and miserable principles? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again?” ~ Galatians 4:9
“For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.” Romans 10:2-3
There are quite a few gray areas that could turn into controversial debates, but when you really take a stand for what’s right, according to the Bible, then you will be persecuted (Matthew 5:10; 1 Peter 3:14). When we don’t know God’s word, it’s easy to be swayed and influenced by someone else’s convictions, taking their word for face value. It’s great to be zealous for God, but is your zeal based on your own depth and breadth of biblical knowledge or are you riding on someone else’s convictions and teachings? As Romans 10:2-3 suggests, when we don’t know God’s word, we can come up with our own system of morality, making it a subjective issue of what’s right and wrong as opposed to what the Bible actually says.
The Bible is watered down when….
- We ignore the truth and suppress it with our wicked actions
- We make up our own rules of what’s right and wrong without basing our morality on the Bible
- Our dulled sensitivity to sin has darkened our minds so that we compromise our conscience more and more. Our thinking actually becomes useless
- We conform to the world’s principles of morality
If you are taking a radical stand for righteousness based on your knowledge of the Bible (Galatians 5:19-21; James 4:17; 2 Timothy 3:1-5), people may label your thinking as “black and white,” hurl insults at you or think you’re just plain weird.
To that end, I leave you with this quote:
“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10:28
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