Saturday, April 20, 2013

Does Anyone Care What God Thinks Anymore?

Mat 10:25 It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household. Mat 10:26 “So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Mat 10:27 What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. Mat 10:28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

In our day of secularism and antibiblical political correctness it is important that Christians not fall prey to mindsets and arguments used today to try and get us to stop proclaiming truth.  One thing we need to keep in mind is that the main commission of Christians is to proclaim the gospel to all cultures and all sinners and all nations that unless they repent and trust in the cross of Christ they shall face the judgment of God.  And as in our text above and later in Paul’s writings we are told up front that this will offend sinners, 1Co 1:23  but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles.  Remember what they did to Stephen when he proclaimed Christ to the Jewish leaders of his day and what about John the Baptist when he told Herod that his divorce was sin?  Are we to think that what he did was wrong?  Not when Jesus had nothing but good to say about him.

And so since we live in a culture that sees offending anyone for anything (except Christianity) as the ultimate evil it necessarily follows that being a Christian and doing the will of God in evangelism is going to mean we will be going around offending people as we tell them that they are sinning and there are consequences of their sin.  Sure, we want to be careful that we don’t needlessly confront them in a belligerent, judgmental way.  We might say that we must tactfully offend people with the gospel and that living the Christian life requires this; there are no silent disciples. 

The other thing that causes me to write this article is the technique that many enemies of Christ are using to try and silence the proclamation of the gospel.  They tell us, and usually not in a loving way, that when we tell them that some activity or lifestyle they are engaged in is wrong or sinful that we are being hateful and offensive.  I recently heard of a Catholic apologist calling an evangelical, who debated Catholics and has written books showing the biblical errors of Catholism, as a person who hates Catholics.  So evidently if you disagree with someone you automatically are a hater. 

I would argue that the one who will tell you the truth and warn you of coming judgment even if it offends you loves you more than your “buddy” who only tells you what he thinks you want to hear. 

All that should be rather obvious to Christians anyway but there is something else that we need to keep before us so that we don’t start thinking that we shouldn’t say anything that offends someone else even when it is the truth of the gospel.  It is seen in the above passage.  The first thing Jesus does is make it clear that in following him we will necessarily offend this world; not through mean behavior but by openly proclaiming truth, 27.  Anyone who says that Christians aren’t supposed to be offensive but accepting of everyone no matter what they are doing has no concept of sin and a holy God and the need of the gospel.

And then the most important thing he reminds us of is that we don’t need to worry so much about whether we have offended someone by telling them the truth as we had better be worrying about whether we are offending God, 28.  We hear a lot today about not saying anything negative about certain sinful behaviors but what we don’t hear is anyone concerned about what God thinks.  I understand this coming from the lost but as Christians let’s remember that we are here to please and honor him, not what is politically correct.  This is swiftly meaning that we are going to be ostracized and persecuted in one way or another.  But this has been the experience of God’s people ever since Cain murdered Abel and we had better be careful of thinking that American Christians somehow can escape it.  At the end of the day it is not American law that we must answer to but the Lord Jesus Christ.

What motivates us, whether we are offensive to men or offensive to the Lord?

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