What do we agree on? Where do we have common ground? What does it mean to follow Jesus? Is there a Christian position that addresses the cultural, legal and social issues that threaten to divide us?
We believe that God created human beings, our planet and all that exists. How God did it, how long it took, when it happened? Scientific questions like those are interesting but they are not a part of our shared confession.
We believe that Jesus Christ is Lord. We believe that Jesus is the Savior of the world. We believe that Jesus taught us a better way of living and loving. We believe that Jesus died on the cross and was raised to new life.
Jesus taught us to love our neighbor. Jesus also taught us that they are all our neighbors. Jesus taught us to forgive each other, to believe that God has forgiven us and to forgive ourselves.
Jesus taught us that the we are to care for the needs of the orphan, the widow, the poor and hungry, the oppressed and the foreigner. Jesus taught us to be humble, humble foot washing servants. Jesus freed us from judging others.
Is there a Christian position that addresses the cultural, legal and social issues that threaten to divide us? Most of the time, the answer is NO. Life in a fallen world is rarely “black and white.” There is a whole lot of gray. There are good Christian people who hold differing views on a variety of issues.
Make room in your life for a whole lot of gray.
Divorce is less than God intended, but sometimes it is less harmful than staying together. Taking the life of another human being is less than God intended, but sometimes it is the lesser of two evils. Abortion is less than God intended, but sometimes it might be the prayerful option of choice. Life is sacred, but we do not worship life or preserve it at all costs.
Dancing is not sinful, but the church once taught that it was. Playing cards and shooting pool are not sinful, but the church once taught that they were. Sex is not sinful, but for most of its history the church pretty much taught that it was a necessary evil. “Sex is dirty, save it for someone you love.”
Christian teachings include: humility, patience, kindness, compassion, generosity, forgiveness, honesty, and faithfully keeping the promises that we have made. Those apply to every life issue and every social concern. But how faithful people live into those teachings and understand their application, is open for interpretation.
Therefore, let me counsel you in this way: stick to Jesus, follow Jesus, work for peace and justice but do not think that you have the corner on the market of truth or divine revelation. Be humble knowing that good Christian people may have opinions that are different from yours. And as incomprehensible as it might seem, they could be right. Dancing might not be a sin.
What do we agree on? Stick to Jesus!
I am honored to share the journey with you—even if we don’t always share the same opinion.