The only reason laws and rules exist is to govern the relationship of one human to another. We can do whatever we want with our lives, we just can’t do anything that infringes on the freedom of another. Jesus logically asserted that if we love our neighbor the law will be fulfilled. A loving heart essentially renders laws and rules unnecessary.
So how backward is it to use the law or right or wrong as an excuse to NOT love your neighbor?
When Christians focus on the issues and what’s right and wrong and forget the people involved there’s a problem. If we see the world as issues and politics and rules and laws and not see all the people with souls, we are missing the point of life.
Jesus is asking me to love my neighbor, but I point out that there is this thing between us which prevents me from loving him. You see, we can’t agree on pre, mid, or post tribulation rapture.
Christians, do you really think you’re doing God a favor by posting “Homosexuality is wrong!” on Facebook? I know it makes you feel like you’re taking a stand for righteousness, but you’re not.
Issues are the devils ingenious device to divide us and keep love from spreading. As I focus my attention on a political or religious ideal or issue it gains importance in my mind. As a result, people who disagree with my ideal diminish in importance. Is an ideal more important than a human soul?
It’s like a beggar asking you for change and telling her the only extra money you have you’re saving for a “hunger campaign.”
Issues are a distractor, like a straw man we construct to use as an excuse to ignore real people because “this issue is more important than any one person.”
Life is about relationships with real people. Life is not about issues. It is not about what is right and wrong.
Let’s remember that God’s original intent for us was to remain ignorant of right and wrong. “Don’t eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” So do I really want to spend my redeemed life screaming about what’s wrong with the world?
If you love someone, right and wrong become irrelevant. Love fulfills the law.
Let’s talk about abortion. The following discussion is a demonstration of how we miss opportunities to love people by being so focused on what’s “wrong.”
I’m going out on a limb and saying most pro-choice supporters would probably agree that in the perfect world abortion wouldn’t exist. It’s scary and dangerous. But while you are screaming at them for their differing opinion, what you’re going to miss is maybe the reason they support the women’s right to choose is because they, or someone they know was raped and became pregnant and couldn’t fathom the thought of never being allowed to forget the horror.
It’s easy to take a hard-line on a subject like abortion until a real person close to you faces the dilemma. When we Christians are focused on the issue instead of the person, we miss our calling to love.
Come on you people who call yourselves Christ Followers! Abortion is a symptom! What are the real “issues” involved? Maybe she was sexually abused by her dad. She hates herself and just feels compelled to find someone who will love her. The pain isn’t as bad when she’s having sex with her boyfriend who tells her he loves her. She gets pregnant, boyfriend gets spooked. She is in no place financially or emotionally to raise a child.
So here she is walking up to the clinic. You confront her. What do you see? An evil person who doesn’t agree with you on the issues and should rot in hell? Or do you see a real person who is hurting and starving for love?
Sin is what humans do when we are not feeling loved. Do you want to continue focusing on the symptom? Or maybe we should start using the antidote Jesus gave us all those 2000 years ago: LOVE.
Do you yell at the guy on the subway for not controlling his kids? What about when you find out his wife just died that morning and he is beside himself?
Think about your own personal struggle with your pet sin. Does beating yourself for it make it better or worse? The more you focus on your weakness and your failures the more they haunt you and the harder they are to overcome. Whichever monster you focus your energy on will get bigger and bigger until it is out of control.
Christian men, when you see a beautiful woman, what do you really see? Do you see a problem to your moral purity? Do you see the devil trying to tempt you? Do you see Jezebel? Or do you see a wonderfully unique person God created?
Christian men, when you look at your wife, what do you see? Do you see a contractual living agreement? Do you see a housekeeper? Do you see a honey-do list? Or do you see a wonderfully unique person God created for you?
How we view people will necessarily inform how we interact with them. When you see the people in your life do you actually see a human being or do you just see a label or a political or social issue?
I have realized, that in my relationship to the pretty woman I call my wife, I’m actually better off thinking of her as my girlfriend. Why think about the obligation of a husband and duty and blah blah blah, when I can just look at her simply as an attractive woman and ask myself not what “should” I do to love her, but how do “I want” to love her.
My relationship with my wife is not defined by a legal contract. That’s just a stupid human institution designed to protect one partner if the other acts selfishly.
Marriage is not an issue. It is two people loving each other. Life is not a list of issues and laws and rights and wrongs. It is about loving the real people in our lives. Too often these issues we harp on are just our excuses to not engage in loving the real people in our lives.
There are people in my life I love so much. Family, or friends I will always love. Some of my friends, though raised in church with me no longer profess Christianity. This used to trouble me. Actually what troubled me was that I loved them anyway. Do you have those people in your life where it doesn’t matter what lifestyle choices they make you just know you’ll love them forever? I was conflicted about this love. Am I allowed to love this person? Won’t I be condoning their behavior? If I really love them shouldn’t I get in their faces and yell at them for their sin so as to scare them into heaven?
Then it dawned on me. Love covers a multitude of sins. Love fulfills the law. There is something higher and transcendent of religion. It is love. This is what Jesus was preaching about.
“But Kris we need to stand up and call sin, sin! We can’t let these people think it’s okay to do what they’re doing!”
Why? Because God hasn’t given them a conscience? Because you changed the rules and freewill is no longer a prerequisite to repentance? God wants genuine changed hearts, not people we shame or coerce into professing Jesus.
I’m going to say it again. Sin is what people do when they don’t feel loved. If you really care about them coming to repentance try love rather than guilt or shame.
I’m going to confess something to you. I am someone who looks out into the world and naturally sees issues and rules and laws and right and wrong. For the longest time I didn’t see people or have much compassion for them. “You’re going through a tough time? Too bad, should have followed the rules better and you could have avoided this heartache. Don’t have time for people like you.” That was seriously my attitude toward everyone, even my siblings.
I was such a natural Pharisee. It came so easy to me. I went to law school for a couple years because I was working toward a career in politics where I could straighten out the issues and establish right and wrong once and for all.
So what happened to me? Life happened. Jesus happened. I told him long ago, I want to know the truth at all costs.
Christian people, Truth transcends religion. The Truth transcends human logic and understanding. The Truth has everything to do with God’s original intention for mankind in the garden before all that law and religion crap became necessary.
God’s original intention for us was to be ignorant of right and wrong. Jesus’ clearly stated desire for us is to love the people in our lives the same way we want to be loved. Put these together and you realize you don’t need to know right and wrong to love someone. In fact, knowing right and wrong will often hinder you from loving.
Let’s allow God to worry about right and wrong and commit to loving people in real ways.
The people of the world are confused by us Jesus people. They know about Jesus telling us to love our neighbor. But all they hear from us is how they won’t be worthy of our love until they become one of us. “Don’t you want to repent of your wicked ways so that you can be a condemning, ugly bigot like me?”
“WAIT A HOT SECOND, GRAY! What about politics? Are you telling me as Christians we shouldn’t be involved in public policy? We shouldn’t participate in shaping the rule of law?”
First of all let’s admit that you don’t have to be a Christian to be interested in morality. All mankind is interested in living in a society where evil doers are punished and the liberties of good citizens are protected. Christians and secularists alike agree morality must be legislated and enforced. We all agree we must have laws against stealing and killing and raping and abuse of power.
Okay, just imagine how our involvement in politics will change once we begin approaching it from the standpoint of love for the individual. Also keeping in mind that God didn’t originally intend for any of this religion, law, politics bullshit in the first place. The political arena truly is one of compromise and tolerance because all we can do is the best we can with the mess we’ve made.
What makes our nation a Christian one is our belief in Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech. It is a respect for individual liberty and free-will. We believe that we are all endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights. Even if you don’t believe in said Creator we still afford you this respect. Christianity is not possible without freewill. We have created an entire nation where the Christian ideal of freewill is celebrated.
They will know we are Christians because of our love and respect for the individual and the liberty God has given them to form their own political opinions. They will know we are Christians because of our attitude of tolerance toward those who don’t agree with us. They will know we are Christians by our love.
Christians, don’t you for a second think that it is God’s will for us to reestablish the Old Testament laws in Modern Day America. Don’t think that it’s our job to create the perfect theocratic government. When Jesus taught us to pray “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven” I venture to say God’s will and kingdom message he was referring to have more to do with loving your neighbor than establishing right and wrong in politics.
Isn’t it interesting to you that Jesus didn’t seem at all interested in the politics of his day? The Holy Nation of Israel was occupied the Romans and Jesus barely acknowledges it. The only thing he said about it was in reference to paying taxes. “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s.” He even treated Roman soldiers with the same respect he did his own people.
Why do Christians act like reversing Roe vs. Wade would solve the problems of the world? Wrongdoing and the fruits of wrongdoing will be always be with us on this earth. We’re not going to solve the sin problem by overturning a Supreme Court decision. It is love that changes hearts, not Congressional Bill 101.
I don’t like the idea of abortion at all. I also don’t like the idea of hell at all. I don’t like the idea of murder. I don’t like the idea of greed.
I think what God doesn’t like is when so-called Christians berate and alienate the very people Jesus died to save, just because their political conscience varies. So because this person agrees with abortion am I justified in dismissing them, therefore lessening their chance of encountering the Gospel Message?
If you think the God of the Bible loves rules and laws and right and wrong, you are, well….wrong. He loves people.