Saving Christianity From Christians
Move In God's Grace And Minister In Mercy
A relatively new hubber just contributed an article entitled “Out of the desert; The Evangelists.” The section that struck me was when Peprah reported what was going on in her campus the past few days: “Evangelical Christians have been on a rampage about our campus. Their method of attack was classic; picket-signs menacingly declaring, ‘Repent or Burn’ or ‘All Sinners Are Going to Hell.’”
Sometimes I often wonder, “How on earth can Christianity be saved from sinner-bashing Christians?” The demons can step aside in this instance, for these are the kinds of Christians that make ME shudder. It’s far easier to point a finger, than to embrace a sinner. How unlike Jesus who became flesh, moved in God’s grace, and ministered in mercy. Who were the people he reached out to? He welcomed tax collectors, prostitutes, and even lepers. He risked his reputation with the judgmental religious right in his day, as he offered a relationship with the sinful collection of riffraff in need of forgiveness. Jesus showed us how to love sinners and hate their sin. As he embraced these estranged people with tough love he said in John 8:11, “Go and sin no more.”
When Jesus quoted Isaiah 61:1-2 he revealed his mission “to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Anyone familiar with Isaiah 61:2 will notice that he deliberately refrained from mentioning the second half of the verse: “and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn.” Accusations against sinners abound. The accuser, the devil, is good at that. God will deal with payback come judgment. In the meantime, the Master cautions us to allow the weeds and wheat to grow together. Let’s avoid castigating sinners. “Perfect love,” rather than casting stones, “casts out fear” (1 John 4:18).
© 2009, Gicky Soriano. All rights reserved.