Monday, March 11, 2013

Don't Major in Minor 3/11/2013

"Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification." Rom 14:19

Unfortunately, it is human nature to be critical of one another.  When we see the way someone is dressed, how they do a certain thing or how they interact with others, our minds often go to the way we would do it as opposed to what we are witnessing.  Further, we can become judgmental of individuals who do not do as we would do.  This can lead to discord, damaged relationships and dis-fellowship.

As Jews and Gentiles began to come together in Christianity, there were numerous differences between them.  Gentiles, for instance, had no problem eating all sorts of meat without regard to its origin or previous use in sacrificial ceremonies.  Jews, on the other hand, avoided meat in an effort to remain ceremonially clean as thousands of years of heritage taught them.  Paul made the case that God had long since given his permission to eat all kinds of food, but that those who knew this should not be critical of those who held on to their heritage and in so doing, served God in their way.

For this reason beloved, we must do all we can to seek peace and unity in our common faith.  In some worship services it is common to wear suits, ties, dresses and hats, while in others, it is "come as you are."  Some have the service arrayed in one order while others another.  Some have praise teams while others have a single song leader.  As long as we are adhering to the apostle's doctrine (the essentials of the Christian faith) and accomplishing God's good, we should be more tolerant of minor differences and not divide over "disputable matters."  Even Jesus was criticized for being a friend of winebibbers, prostitutes and tax collectors.  His goal was to seek and save the lost.  This should also be our goal and there is more than one way to reach it.  Let us seek to build one another up for the Christian task and avoid tearing each other down to the delight of the Enemy.



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