Wednesday, January 20, 2021

A Word For Wednesday What Is True?

Welcome to A Word For Wednesday.

Have you noticed how much conflicting information is swirling around us lately? Wow! There are so many things flying under the flag of Christianity these days. Have you been paying attention to some of the prophecies, re-prophecies, amended prophecies, revised prophecies and retracted prophecies concerning COVID, vaccines, the election and the election aftermath?

This avalanche of "inside" information and breathless predictions confuses and a whole lot of thoughtful and serious Christians. It makes me a little sad.

Honestly, Brothers and Sisters, some things I am witnessing under the banner of Christianity embarrasses me. They draw some of the strangest conclusions and come up with some of the most hair-brained ideas and they make me a little distressed that we fly the same flag.

Are they all Christians? I think many of them are, but I sincerely do not have a clue! Thankfully, I do not have to decide who is a genuine Christian and who is not. I am not even interested in making that determination.

I do have to decide whether or not I will accept everything I hear or whether or not it is Biblical or even close.

Jesus warned us clearly
Matthew 24:4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
And John repeated the warning.
I John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

I am not going to address specific prophecies or theories or ideas floating around at the moment.
I may do that later.
But we do have some responsibilities here.

As Christians, we should not be blown around by every new idea, concept or speculation.

Listen to this guiding principle.
Ephesians 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

God expects us to grow up in Christ! Unifying faith that produces knowledge of the Son of God unto a perfect man to grow into the fullness of Christ!

Children will believe anything! 

We convinced Odie that she was a Martian when she was about 8 years old. We told her that her skin had been dyed by a top-secret government project and IF she scratched herself too hard, she would find her original green skin.

She believed us. She was a child. 

It is amazing how childish we can be in these perilous times. 

We believe every sleight of men. We believe their cunning craftiness. We are tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine or every wind of information.

It seems like we strain for all we are worth to believe a Facebook lie, Twitter fable or YouTube fiction and refuse to believe the truth when it is written in black and white in the Bible.

We should not be so quick to believe every windy doctrine! To do so is immature, childish.

This is the will of God, friends

I Corinthians 14:20 Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.

We should not be so gullible, easily taken in, swallowing every wild idea we hear or read, hook line and sinker. As Christians, we should not be blown around by every new idea, concept or speculation.

What is true?
How do we detect truth and reject error?

I have been pondering some broad principles concerning some things that do not belong in Christianity.
If some of these things that we hear do not line up with these broad principles, then we can reject them without much consideration.

Here is the first one.
A super critical judgmental attitude has no place in Christianity.

We must use our own judgment every day all day. 
-It is cold outside, I will wear a coat. 
-The car is coming too fast, I will not walk across the street. 
-That is a dangerous activity, I will participate in it. 
-That person is a reckless driver, I will not let them drive my car.
-If I buy that, I will not be able to meet my financial obligations.

-That action is immoral or unbiblical, I will not do it.
-That person is a thief, I will not give them the key to my house or the combination to my safe.
-That person is controlled by an addicting and mind altering substance, I will not let them care for my children.
-That person is a rapist or child molester, I will not let them close to my family.
-That activity will bring filth into my mind, I will run from it.

It is necessary to use judgment in every area of our lives, but we must resist the very real possibility of falling into the trap of being super critical and judgmental about everything.

Kelly Jo and I work very diligently to avoid forming and spouting opinions about everyone and everything. This is where we learned that.

In our early married life, we were hanging around young couples that had strong negative opinions about everyone else. We noticed that when we left their presence, we felt filthy even though we had not contributed anything but our ears to the conversation.

Those early friendships were very precious to us, so we worked on changing their demeaning attitudes. Every time a name was mentioned we determined to jump out in front of the conversation by finding wonderful things to say about the person they were preparing to malign. Sometimes all we could say is, "They sure do whistle good!"

That worked for some and not for others, but the point is we purposed that we were not going to live as hyper critical people.

We have had to work hard on maintaining that position in life, because people love to judge and they love to tell everyone how accurate their judgment is.

We are ate up with that super critical judgmental attitude in our nation today and the church is caught up in it too. Everyone has an opinion and people that have a platform for that opinion are quick to shout it from the housetop and condemn every lowlife that dares to disagree with them.

Everyone is a Google doctor now.
It is amazing how many people in our churches know more about infections diseases than scientists and doctors that have studied the subject for many years.
Everyone is a military expert.
Everyone is an economic expert.
Everyone knows what is going on behind the scenes.
Everyone knows the intentions of everyone else.

And we are quick to condemn everyone but ourselves!

I have heard people that go by the label of Christianity that voted on both ends of the political spectrum in the recent election talk about how stupid and ungodly other people are because they voted differently than them.

Come on! Cut people some slack. Not everyone is evil! It is possible that people can think differently than you do and not be devil possessed!

A super critical judgmental attitude has no place in Christianity.

Hating people has no place in Christianity.

Go ahead and hate sin, hate the consequences of sin and even broccoli if you want, but hating people has no place in Christianity.

You must let go of your hate or let go of your Christian label. They will not coexist together.

There is so much hate in our nation. Hating people because they are a different color, a different culture or embrace a different philosophy of life is raging at this moment. The mantra throughout the summer and fall of 2020 and still ringing today is hate, hate, hate.

We as Christians can not answer that hate with hate in return. We are people of God. God is love. Hate does not, can not, will never mix with true Christianity.

We are probably about to experience hatred toward Christians and morality like we never have before in this country, but God's Word is still true. Listen,

I John 2:8 Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.
 9 He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.
 10 He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.
 11 But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.

I John 4:20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?

Hating people has no place in Christianity.

Racism has no place in Christianity.

Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people on the basis of their racial or ethnic group is not Christian. It is anti-Christian. It is against Christ.

Please, please, please do not use your church or your Christianity or the Bible to justify racism in your life. 

People of your skin color are not superior to people of another skin color, no matter what your skin color is! What in the world makes you believe that God favors white people or brown people or black people or purple people.

It is the height of arrogance to believe that God has elevated people that look like me to be supreme over people that do not look like me. Not one person is better than any other person because of the color of their skin. That is ridiculous!

God has never declared his love and allegiance to a specific color of people. God created people in His image and if you are prejudiced against anyone, then you are hating on God's creation.

God loves people! Hear that! God loves people! 

God sent His son to die for people. When you look down your nose at people because of the color of their skin, you are ignoring that God made them in His own image and that Christ paid the penalty for their sin just like He did for you!

Racism has no place in Christianity.

This is certainly not an exhaustive list and is not intended to be. But we have to have somewhere to begin to sort all of this information overload.

What in the world are we supposed to believe?

Well, it is not God's will for us to believe everything and I believe we can reject information that comes from a place of hate, racism, violence and a super critical sensibility.

We can reject those things without a second thought. At least maybe that is a place to begin.

That is our Word for Wednesday. Thank you for joining us.


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