Hello everyone! The post that you are about read is full of my personal thoughts on some of the issues that are trending in our nation. What I’m going to say will offend people. I’m not going to sugar-coat my opinions because I’m afraid of pushing people away or offending them because Christians are only supposed to love everyone. What I say is actually out of love and love means doing what is best for people, and that includes warning people if they are going the wrong direction. Just like whenever you were little and your parents disciplined you when you colored on the wall and lied about it. (True story!) I’m not going to say these things because I feel that I’m your parent and you’ve disobeyed me, I’m saying them because I just want to get my opinions off my chest and I feel as a follower of Christ I should no longer remain silent about the issues at hand.This also might end up being the longest post I’ve written to date. Here it goes!
I grew up in a Church of Christ, traditional marriage, homeschooled by my mom, family. I was taught to respect my parents, not to steal, don’t have sex before you get married, and all the other normal churchy “rules” which are based off of the rules that we’ve been given by God. The issue of homosexuality wasn’t even brought up because everyone knew that was wrong and it wasn’t a common thing for people to be gay or at least to be open about it.
Even though I grew up in the church, I have chosen to hold on to those beliefs. I now no longer consider myself Church of Christ. I consider myself to be Non-Denominational (This post isn’t about how non-denominational church really aren’t non-denominational. So don’t even bother bringing that up whenever you’re forming your comments). What I mean by stating what “kind” of believer I claim to be is that even though some of my beliefs have changed such as: the fact that I don’t have a problem with worship sets including instruments, I don’t feel the need to put on my “Sunday Best” every time that I go to church, and I have no problem with getting tattoos permanently placed on my skin, all of my core beliefs have not changed. Those are the ones that are based on the Ten Commandments that God gave to the Israelites in the Old Testament of the Bible which are the same ones that Jesus reiterated in the New Testament.
Feeling a little foggy about what some of those ten are? Allow me to remind you! I will be just typing them the way I would say them, If you feel like reading from the bible, open up another table on your web browser and follow along with me. http://www.esvbible.org/Exodus+20/
1. DO NOT HAVE ANY OTHER GODS BEFORE ME (SEE THE LITTLE G? THAT MEANS THAT ALL OTHER GODS DON’T MATTER COMPARED TO THE REAL GOD).
2. DO NOT MAKE ANY IMAGES THAT YOU WILL THEN CONSIDER TO BE A GOD OVER ME. (GOD ALSO CLARIFED THAT WE SHOULDN’T MAKE AN IDOL OUT OF ANYTHING THAT LOOKS LIKE US, OR ANIMALS, OR REALLY ANY OTHER OBJECT THAT YOU CAN THINK OF. Anything that you worship other than God is not good.)
3. DO NOT TAKE THE LORD’S NAME IN VAIN. (HE REALLY HATES IT WHENEVER PEOPLE DO THAT!)
4. REMEMBER THE SABBATH DAY AND KEEP IT HOLY. (BASICALLY WHAT THIS MEANS IS TO HAVE ONE DAY OF THE WEEK WHERE YOU AREN’T DOING YOUR JOB. GOD RECOGNIZED THAT WE REALLY NEED A BREAK FROM THE OFFICE AND HE MADE A LAW ABOUT SO WE WOULD TAKE IT SERIOUSLY.)
5. HONOR YOUR MOM AND DAD. (PRETTY STRAIGHT FORWARD REALLY! HE EVEN SAYS THAT YOU’LL LIVE LONGER BECAUSE OF IT. PROBABLY BECAUSE THE DAYS THAT YOU DON’T HONOR YOUR PARENTS ARE THE DAYS THAT THEY WANT TO KILL YOU.)
These first five commandments have all have had additional instructions included with them just in case we didn’t get the meaning behind what God wanted us to grasp. The last five don’t have instructions because, honestly, they’re all ‘duh’ commands.
6. DO NOT MURDER.
7. DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY.
8. DO NOT STEAL.
9. DO NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS. (DON’T LIE IN COURT OR ANY OTHER LEGAL PROCEEDING.)
10. DO NOT COVET. (THAT INCLUDES THAT OTHER GUY’S STUFF, HOUSE, CAR, SIGNIFICATION OTHER.)
During his ministry on earth, Jesus tells us that we are to keep the ten commandments. He didn’t come down to earth as a baby, go through the awkward stage of puberty, and start walking about Israel with some stinky fishermen just to say…Actually guys, forget everything that everyone else said before me. The only rules you have to follow are love me (and the big man upstairs, my dad) and love each other. NO!! “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.” Matthew 5:17-18 Basically all of Matthew 5 is Jesus going over the ten commandments again and give us more modern instructions to follow.
Jesus is pretty clear that if you break any of his commands it’s a sin. Plain and simple! Why is something a sin? Did God just go…nope, I don’t want humans to have any fun. Let’s take away some stuff just for the whim! Sin hurts you, others, dishonors God, or is there for your provision. Provision? Since God is above all and created us, that’s why he said some stuff wasn’t allowed, especially when you come into the cleanliness laws of the Old Testament.
Murder is obviously bad, but stealing some grapes might seem not so bad. But it is still sin.
but sin is sin! We can try to make ourselves feel better and say that it’s not really that bad, but ultimately it’s God who will judge us for the things that we’ve done. Jesus said “But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken.” Matthew 12:26 But just because God is the sole judge doesn’t mean that we as Christians should keep our mouths shut whenever we see someone sinning because we’re not supposed to judge them! Maybe they haven’t realized that what they’re doing is something that God has said not to do.
Sexual immorality is one such sin that I feel is becoming more accepted in our culture than even ten years ago. “And he said, ‘What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, comes evil thought, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person’”. Mark 7:20-23 Finding someone attractive isn’t a sin. I find several celebrities attractive, but I’m not going to leave my husband on Tuesdays and Thursdays to be with someone I feel attracted to and it’ll make me happy. Oh and my husband will understand because I love him and he loves me and he just wants me to do whatever I want to be happy regardless of the fact that we made a legal marriage agreement to be committed to each other only. Sound crazy? Because it is! Looking once isn’t a sin. Looking twice, three, four times is! Acting on your thoughts is when the sin takes place. Gay marriage isn’t a sin. It’s following through on the same sex attraction that’s the sin. There are plenty of people that are attracted to the same sex, but they choose to not follow that path. It’s the exact same thing as if my husband and I were still dating and we decided to have sex before we got married. Sin is Sin!
Something that I’m having a hard time understanding is why people think that they can sin and get away with it? They think that God loves them no matter what they do and they can continue to sin without any consequences. I’m pretty sure that’s not how that works! Paul made it pretty clear that people who continue in sin will not enter the kingdom of God. Yes, God does love us! He sent His Only son to die the worst death in recorded history so that we could spend a life time in his love. What if your parents let you play out in the street and didn’t care if you got run over or not. They love you, but not enough to save your life or tell you not to play in the street because you can get hurt? I don’t want to have a parent like that! God has given us the power to chose what we do with our own life. Which I feel is a very special thing compared to other religions. We still are responsible for those choices that we get to make. And they do affect other people whether we think it does or not. A choice that was made in my family severely affected us for 15 ish years. Only by the amazing grace of God did we get to heal and move on from someone’s choice to follow through on thought and sin.
Something that I think is different about the particular sin of homosexuality… people are proud of it. Our society hasn’t helped that though. If my family was proud of the sin that happened and tore our family apart then we would be insane. Why is that people are proud to call themselves gay whenever it’s very clear in the bible that it’s a sin just like all the others. God doesn’t turn a blind eye to the sin that we do. He loves us because he’s invested so much in our lives, but he doesn’t approve of your sinful choices. I’m not going to even touch the subject of salvation because that’s something that it strictly between you and God. But I do believe that once we’ve accepted Christ into our hearts there is a change that should take place in us. Once Paul accepted Christ as his savior he stopped persecuting the Christians. He stopped sinning when he decided to follow Christ. (By sinning I mean he stopped killing Christians.)
Paul often calls himself a servant of Christ. Servants don’t get to do whatever they want without consequences. We can’t claim to have the Holy Spirit in us, be a follower of Christ, and a child of God and still continually, willinging, proudly sin! It’s not acceptable! God loves us, but why should he show mercy and grace if we keep on doing the things that we know are wrong and that are clearly laid out in the scriptures. As a follower of Christ I am called to keep other Christians accountable for their actions as well as my own. “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” Matthew 7:1-5. Yes, I do need to take care of any sin that I’ve done before calling someone on their own sin. But that doesn’t mean that we as Christians should remain silent about the obvious sin that people are involved in. Yes we are called to love them as Christ loved us. May I remind you that Jesus wasn’t all sunshine and hugs and good feels. He got pretty upset whenever he saw the money-changers and pigeon sellers doing business in the temple.
For those of us that have given our lives over to Christ, we are called to be Salt and Light. “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:13-16. Why is it that Christians get attacked whenever we try to stand up for what we believe? If you’re getting offended by someone saying that what you’re doing is a sin and here are the bible verses to back that up then that’s called being convicted by the Holy Spirit. And maybe you should re-examine your heart and the choices that you’re making. If someone tells me(in love) that I’m sinning but doesn’t have the scripture to back it up then I probably will be more likely to keep on sinning. But if they show me legit scripture saying that what I’m doing is a sin, then that’s gonna make me think twice about my choices.
Our God is a jealous God. He is not willing to share, not willing to play second fiddle. Jesus made it clear that even some good things such as family and earthly possessions would be lost for his sake (Matthew 19:29). If you are not willing to change even though God has said it clearly in His Word or if you have been convicted throught the Holy Spirit, you have put that thing, whatever it may be, before God.
Like I said at the beginning of this post, I’m not saying all these things because I feel that I’m your parent. I want those that I care about to have the same chances that I’ve been given to be able to see the path that they’re on, and to change it if it’s the wide one. “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” Matthew 7:13-14
If I’m wrong and I’ve been following a bunch of rules that aren’t causing me harm or making me suffer then I’ve only wasted my life. But if I’m right then I will be so glad that I didn’t waste my eternity. If you see me doing something that I don’t need to be doing, please let me know! I’m only human and I don’t sometimes pay attention to what I’m doing. Thanks for reading to the very end of what I consider to be a very long post, and one honestly I don’t think that I would read all of it myself.