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This may seem disjointed and tangent-y (yes, I wrote that), but stay with me.
Someone posted a status update about homosexuality and I thought about adding to the discussion but changed my mind. I just don’t know where to start. The comments were overwhelmingly unscriptural. There is just so much bad theology being tossed about by Christians on Facebook that you almost need to teach a course on Bible doctrine and interpretation before countering their arguments. Let’s call it Facebook Theology 101! And I promise I’m not being arrogant when I say that, because I don’t have near the biblical understanding I should have at this point in my walk.
It’s just that so much gobbledygook is being passed off as scripture by people who simply do not study the Bible. They just don’t. They may read the Bible, but they don’t study it to show themselves approved unto God. Instead, they like and share memes that contain Bible verses or quotes that sound biblical. They pull verses out of context and create a belief system from them that has no Scriptural basis. They have this “feeling,” then they develop an opinion about that feeling and then they look for verses to support the feeling, ignoring the original intent of the text.
And this post really has nothing to do with homosexuality. Nothing!
This is about Christians using the Bible as a database of good quotes, rather than life-changing doctrine. It really comes down to letting Scripture have authority over our thoughts and feelings. It’s about letting Scripture define our doctrine, instead of our feelings defining our doctrine. Feelings change! They aren’t anything worth standing on!
“Faith is the art of holding on to things in spite of your changing moods and circumstances.” -C.S. Lewis
This post is about studying the Word, God’s final authority, and comparing Scripture with Scripture to make sure something is so, instead of casually reading it and snatching verses here and there out of context.
And then there’s another problem. Christians need to stop using the Bible to bully people into compliance. They need to stop attacking the World for spreading darkness and disrupting our peaceful little lives.
We are supposed to step out into the darkness to shine our Light for the whole world to see. After all, the Light within us is none other than Jesus Christ, Himself! You see, our battle is not with our neighbors and coworkers and the people we bump into at the grocery store. Our battle is not with flesh and blood but the demonic forces of darkness. We are called to LOVE our enemies and share the truth in that same love.
Instead of shouting out how wrong the world is, perhaps we should start showing them the better way. If they only see a bunch of hateful, angry, self-loathing, guilt-ridden and thoroughly depressed Christians, why would they want what we have? Isn’t that a lot like trying to sell someone a beautiful Cadillac and then showing them a rusty, beat-up Pinto with no wheels? Why on earth would they want to buy that?! And by the way, that is a terrible analogy because it really isn’t our job to sell Jesus. We’re simply called to tell others about Jesus and then show them Jesus in us and let the Holy Spirit work in them to do the rest.
Don’t you think the world could learn a lot more about our faith from our actions than our words? I’m not condemning sharing the gospel. Heaven forbid! That’s not what I am saying at all! It’s just that how and when we say something is just as important as what we say. (1 John 3:18) When the opportunity arises to share the gospel, go for it! But the Bible tells us to be slow to speak for a reason. For one thing, it affords you the time to carefully think about what you are going to say. After all, we are here to represent Christ. Do we really want to show them a different (lesser) Christ than we received?
And here is something I have learned the hard way. We need to quit sharing stuff that we know nothing about. Study before you share. The Holy Spirit is really preaching this to my soul. It is so easy to act like we know more than we do because we memorized a couple Bible verses. I should know because I’ve been on the receiving end of a 2 Tim 3:16 correction more than once because I violated this advice. Stop assuming you’re right because it sounds good or looks good on a Facebook meme!
Consider this example. I hear all the time that, “We are not to judge.” Sounds good, right? But what does the Bible say? Yes, you can back this up with Scripture, but do a study on judging, examining all the Bible has to say on the subject and you will find that there are times that you are to judge. But, unless you study this out, you won’t know when it is appropriate to do so. Instead, anytime anyone challenges your doctrine, you’ll just say, “The Bible says we’re not to judge” and assume that will end any discussion. Of course we are to judge. How can you even make a judgment against those that are judging if that wasn’t the case? (I encourage you to study this further on your own. Some verses to consider: 1 Corinthians 2:15, 5:12-13, 2 Timothy 4:2, John 7:24, Matthew 7:5)
The point I’m getting at is that the world is watching and listening to everything we are saying. Do you really want to be responsible for spreading bad theology that could lead someone down a path to hell, simply because it sounded good? There is a way that seems right unto man but in the end leads to death. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want someone’s death on my conscience just so I can sound right. I’d rather be right and that can only come by studying the Word, not by sharing facebook memes.