Accept other believers who are weak in faith, and don’t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong. – Romans 14:1 (NLT)
I went to see Redeeming Love this weekend. It is a romance based on the book of Hosea. I thought the movie was awesome. I thought the book was awesome when I read it a few years ago. I felt God’s presence in both of them. I learned a little bit more about what I’m like and how He is. It was just a presence of God that I needed to experience. I felt like God sent the book and the movie at just the right moments in my life.
I looked online to see what others thought. I found so many videos just bashing the movie. They called it pornography. They said that Michael Hosea (the protagonist) did all the saving, not Jesus. There were a lot of YouTubers calling the movie evil. After watching it, I just don’t see it. It shouldn’t, but it all serves now as one more thing to divide Christians while an unbelieving world looks on and says, “I want no part of those Christians if that is the way they are with each other.”
I saw where someone posted that they were at a Reba McEntire concert. Yes, a Reba concert. The first comment said, “You shouldn’t be there, we are supposed to be separate from the world.” To relate this to the verse, one person, who claims to know Jesus, thinks it is perfectly fine to go and enjoy Reba, another, who claims to know Jesus, thinks it is wrong. Again, what does an unbeliever think when they see that conversation?
I remember one time posting a video of me singing a song in a brewery. Some people in the church I was attending at the time lost their minds. They immediately did some “research” on one of the bands we covered and let us know just how evil we were for entertaining with their music. Now, don’t get me wrong, those band members were not and are not even close to being Christians, but a few people let us know that my daughter and I were heading straight to hell for playing the song. I’m not trying to justify my, or anyone’s actions, I just want to emphasize Romans 14:1
I don’t know about you, but my deep, inner sense of right and wrong has changed so much in my 30 years of being a Christian. As I grow in the Lord, what He says is right or wrong in different settings and situations changes over time. I’m not talking about obvious sins like sexual immorality, drug abuse, anger, violence, theft, vice, and whatnot . . . Galatians 5 tells us what they are. I’m talking about the things God says is wrong for you at a given moment or time period in your life. For example, nobody would call playing golf a sin. Yet, there was a time when God let me know that I was not to play. To play would have been to disobey Him. There was also a time when I could not listen to rock music. I loved that stuff so much as a kid, God asked me to go through a long season of listening to, learning, and playing worship music and old hymns. Years later, I could listen to rock songs again because they were no longer medicine to my soul, or a way of escape. Even now, I do go and see the concerts of the bands I idolized growing up. The awe, wonder, and the covetousness of wanting to be those guys no longer exists. I pray for them and ask God to save them before they draw their last breaths. I thank God that He didn’t give me what I thought I wanted and let me live out that lifestyle. I thank God that He has given me a heart that wants them to be saved and go to heaven. I don’t want to see anyone punished forever.
All I’m saying is love God, love His Word, and allow it to work on you. If Romans 8:28 is true, and I absolutely believe that it is, everything, even the things we think are evil that others are doing, is working for their good. Pray for others instead of bashing them. Literally, for God’s sake, all this quarreling among Christians just has to stop. The unbelieving world is watching.
Lord, the greatest commandment is to Love You with all our hearts, all our minds, and all our strength. Help us to remember that the greatest sin we can commit is simply not love you. There is no amount of right we can do to earn Heaven, and there is no amount of wrong we can do to deserve hell. You have taught me so much by being places I never should have been and doing things I never should have done. Thank You, Lord. You really are working all things for my good. I ask for You to help me be merciful to those who love to point out other people’s perceived wrongs. I don’t want to write them off or think negatively of them. I want to remember what Romans 14:1 says. Help us to get this right. If the world could just see Christians united and wanting the best for one another, we would be so unstoppable. Right now, we are very much stoppable. Help us. With all my heart I’m asking for you to send revival to this land, Lord. You have done it before . . . You can do it again. Amen