Don't Let Foolishness Get the Best of You
Matthew 5:21 & 22 says:” You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hellof fire.”
Okay, so I realize that talking about hellfire and damnation doesn’t necessarily get this devotional off on the most pleasant of starts. So let me make a bit of a clarification. My focus here is to simply point out that anger towards people, resulting in insults and name-calling, is not encouraged in the Bible. Cool?
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let me just dive right into a growing trend I’ve noticed and perhaps you have also. This phenomenon stems from our present-day culture. It has become increasingly intertwined with our everyday Christian culture and causes us to be conformed to the age in which we live. No doubt that social networking, video-sharing sites and blogs have made it even easier for Christians to be guilty of rudely calling out the foolishness of others.
Now I understand that there are times where we, as Christians, will need to approach a dear brother or sister in the Lord about sin. In one of my previous devotionals, “Be Yourself,” I actually touched on how Matthew 18:15-17 instructs us on the proper way to confront sin. It starts with approaching the person face-to-face… not knocking them off their feet with a nasty tweet.
If you don’t quite know what I’m talking about, just pull up any video on the web about Christianity or Jesus and you’ll find just as many nasty critiques from Christians as you will from atheists and evolutionists. On Twitter and Facebook, you might have noticed how bold and brash some Christians can be in their convictions. Even the meekest of saints can become someone totally different online because, well, they just can! What’s to stop them? This power to comment with little or no consequence is not only troubling to see and harmful to that person’s character, but it’s contaminating our witness as Christians in today’s world.
Who’s getting your goat these days? Is there someone in your life that doesn’t seem to be making good decisions? A close friend or someone you’ve separated yourself from because of their lifestyle? Maybe someone in the public eye like, I don’t know… a famous pastor perhaps? The President of the United States?
Whatever the case, John 13:35 says, “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." So, the next time you get ready to speak your mind to the masses, stop and think about the overall outcome. Once you’ve had a chance to cool your jets, consider how you can address this issue in love.
You’ll probably be really glad you did and may actually have a positive impact on the situation.
For Further Reading