Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for righteousness sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. 1 Peter 3:13-15
There is much to respond to in the world these days. And I have been troubled by the lack of Christian response to most issues. Kirk Cameron went on an interview and told the truth about what Christians believe about homosexuality. It’s detrimental. Not because he says so. Not because we agree. Because to live in sin against God is self-destructive regardless of which sin. He told the truth in the way that parents tell their children not to touch a hot stove. And because the truth he told is unpopular culturally, or at least with the liberal, cultural elite, he’s being vilified. Sorry. But, God doesn’t say affirm the truth as long as it is socially acceptable or popular. In fact, the passage above presumes people won’t like it. Are we really surprised by the backlash? Are we even saddened by the people who would go to great lengths to defend sin? We should be.
On the other side, I’m tired of the conservative habit of late to snipe people with language that isn’t appropriate in order to get attention. We don’t use certain language not because we know that it is unkind, or because it labels the men who use it as sexist pigs, but because we went to Kindergarten and passed. But mom, EVERYONE else uses that language isn’t an acceptable excuse in our home and certainly not helpful on the radio by grown ups who should know better.
Our goal as believers isn’t to convert people to our own prejudices, perspectives, ideology, or any specific political party. The goal is for people to meet Jesus. When that goal is second to anything else we are in sin. Perhaps this will be good to remember when the Presidential election takes on two views instead of the splintered shards of glass the Republican party seems to have become. Prayer will get you farther than polling. Ask the Lord for direction for the nation. Fast for the sins in your own heart. Listen to the teaching of God’s word and reflect on what it means to participate Christianly in a diverse political system.
We have a hope. Our hope is not in a political party or candidate; not in an ideology or even a systematic theology. Our hope is in a person who lived life perfectly in this imperfect world. Jesus had imperfect earthly parents; a cruel, despotic governmental system and an overbearing religious establishment willing to throw him under the bus for the release of a known murderer for their own sinful self-protection. Yet, He was obedient to the point of death–even death on a cross (Phil. 2:8). His obedience is our righteousness. How can our hearts not break for those whose only hope is in the things of this world?
Things to think about. Responses welcome! Blessings.