It is common belief that if I include God in my day-to-day conversations, I am going to offend people. Apparently, if I mention Jesus to somebody that is not incline to follow Jesus, they will find the mentioning of an important part of my life to be “intrusive” or “in your face.” Somehow, we have become convinced that the least offensive way to operate in life is to operate in atheism.
If people leave God out of their conversation, I am not allowed to be offended by that. If a friend walks up to me and says, “Wow, Mother Nature sure is angry at us,” in response to some crazy downpours we have, it would be strange for me to reply, “You’re seriously going to throw in my face that you don’t acknowledge the Creator of the Universe?!” Continue reading “I Don’t Want to be a Christian Atheist Anymore”
In an interview with Dave Rubin, Ben Shapiro was asked about his views on same-sex marriage. Shapiro is an orthodox Jew, so our theology is not the same. He made his argument, and Rubin seemed to question that Shapiro wasn’t using biblical quotations as his reasoning. Shapiro said that he felt the need to think through his biblical positions beyond just quoting Bible verses. He said:
“As a religious person, I believe that God didn’t create stupid rules.”
First off, apologies for the delay in posting. I’ve been pretty busy lately. Moving on…
In the last post we talked about how looking at Jesus as our role model would affect the way we love God. Today, let’s talk about how it would affect the way we treat other people.
Let’s start with this question:
What is the difference between Christian love and the love of non-believers?
Here’s what Jesus says in Matthew 5:43-47…
You have heard that it was said, “Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.” But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?
This verse makes it clear that the only difference is this: Christians love people (and show it) even when the person being loved doesn’t deserve it.
This is tough. But following Jesus can be tough.
When Jesus washed the disciples’ feet (including Judas Iscariot’s), He knew that Judas was going to stab Him in the back. But He washed His feet anyway. And then He said…
I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. (John 13:15-16)
How will you show love to somebody that doesn’t deserve it today?
When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was, He replied that the greatest commandment was to love God.
He answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27 NIV)
All of my heart. All of my soul. All of my strength. All of my mind. That about sums it up. That’s all of me. But what does loving God with all of me even look like?
My wife and I just celebrated six months of marriage about a week ago, so it’s really easy to remember our engagement. And I can remember that as the time wound down, the wedding was on my mind almost all of the time. A huge chunk of my life – a very large percentage – was dedicated to making sure that I was ready for that big day.
I mean … sure … I was still going to work and doing what I needed to do every day, but my entire life was focused on the wedding. It was all I was thinking of. I was dieting and losing weight and making arrangements… just making sure I was ready for that big day.
And Jesus calls us – the church – His bride. We should have that mindset.
What does loving God, with all of you, look like in your life?
Over the next few days, I want to write about Jesus as the role model for Christians. That seems so basic as I write it, but, if we’re honest, very few of us Christians actually live like Jesus – myself included.
Though, to our credit, the only reason that we don’t strive to be like Jesus is because some of the things that He said while on earth are really, really hard. Jesus said crazy things like, “love your enemies,” which, as the hilarious guys over at Blimey Cow pointed out, “didn’t work out so well for Jesus, did it?”
Today’s post is short since it’s just an introduction for this series. But I want to leave you with a question that we’ll look at together…