My own personal stance against religious hypocrisy - both my own, and any others who seek to hurt people in the name of God.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

So How Do You Wish to be Treated

So many of us struggle with what is right and what is wrong. What is God's will in this situation? We know someone is committing sin. What do we do? What should be our attitude toward them? What does God say?

Believe it or not, the answer is actually quite simple, and God gives us the answer in plain words. And when you consider God, and what we know and understand about him, it makes such perfect sense.

Luke (chapter 10) New King James Version

[25] And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, "Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?"

[26] He said to him, "What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?"

[27] So he answered and said, "'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,' and 'your neighbor as yourself.'"

[28] And He said to him, "You have answered rightly; do this and you will live."

Of course, the lawyer then seeks a way out of this by asking who is neighbor is. Jesus then tells the story of the Good Samaritan.

Since God has placed us in a such a small place in the universe He considered us all to be neighbors. This is true. Do we not tend to view people in other towns and villages as a single entity? They are neighbors, despite the fact that many of them never meet each other. To us, this planet Earth is a large thing. But in consideration of the vast universe, it's hardly a street in a suburb. We are neighbors.

So. Back to our original questions.

We know someone is committing sin. What do we do? What should be our attitude toward them? What does God say?

Well, God says we are all neighbors. Even those on the complete opposite side of this planet. Even those who hate us and want to kill us. We are neighbors.

Next. What should be our attitude toward them? Well, what would we want their attitude to be toward us were our positions reversed? Be honest. For this reason:

Matthew (chapter 7) New King James Version

[1] "Judge not, that you be not judged.

[2] For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you."

Finally, what should we do? Again, what would we want others to do were our positions reversed? And answer intelligently. Would you really want them to encourage you in your sin? Would you want them to help you guarantee eternal separation from God? If so, then that's what you do. If not, then look for ways to encourage them to cease sinning. But be careful. God, himself, allows freedom of choice. Don't take that from people unless what they are doing is endangering lives.

It's easy for me to write all of this. It's easy for me to say. The truth is, it's not always easy to follow this practice. That does not excuse the not following, but it is difficult sometimes. It comes down to this: What's important to you? God? Love? If so, then look to God and love when making these decisions. That's all I'm saying.

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