'Tolerate as I have tolerated you'
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Jesus is not nice.
"Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth. I have come to bring not peace but the sword." (Matt 10:34)
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA -
It's no accident that C.S. Lewis used a lion to represent Christ.
"Safe?" said Mr. Beaver; "don't you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you." (C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe)
I'm frustrated by how soft the western world (and that's a good portion of the Christian western world, too) has grown to become. Oh I better not say that, otherwise I might hurt their feelings. Oh I better not fail him even though he didn't meet the criteria. Oh I better not tell her she dresses inappropriately because I don't want to embarrass her.
Further, the great fight over equality. Equality of gender. Equality of life stage. Equality of sexuality. There's a great deal of difference between being treated equally and being treated justly. I don't think we want equality to be what we fight for, do you?
What ever happened to telling the truth? What ever happened to accountability? As Nathan explained last week on the meaning of love - is not speaking the truth and accountability the most loving thing - the best thing for them? Would it not be most loving to foster an environment of honesty, to call our brothers and sisters on, to open their eyes to opportunities for growth?
I acknowledge that there are times when our opinions are best kept to ourselves, but I'm talking about the truth here. Tell him that his Maths just does not scrub up and he should think about getting a tutor. Tell her that the way she dresses is leading men astray and speak into her heart that she is a treasure to be discovered. Tell him that the music he is listening to is destroying his soul. Tell her that she needs to pull her finger out and start praying every day again. This means saying the hard stuff.
Jesus was not afraid to show or tell people when they were doing wrong, so why should we?
"He found in the temple area those who sold oxen, sheep, and doves, as well as the money-changers seated there. He made a whip out of cords and drove them all out of the temple area, with the sheep and oxen, and spilled the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables, and to those who sold doves He said, 'Take these out of here, and stop making my Father's house a marketplace'." (John 2:14-16)
Jesus was not fighting against them. He was fighting for them. His actions were clearly premeditated ("He made a whip out of chords"). It was not a momentary burst of fury. No, Jesus was calling His brothers and sisters on and His message was loud and clear.
I say goodbye to tolerance, indifference, apathy and being lukewarm and hello to accountability, challenging others and loving the heck out of our brothers and sisters.
Will you join me in fighting for them?
Michaela Daphne is an author, copywriter, and blogger from Australia.
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