Give Up Your Stereotypes, Not Your Christian Convictions – Stand to Reason Blog

It never ceases to amaze me, how many people treat sinners as non-people. We are all sinners! We can and should believe that there are things that are absolutely wrong, but to forget that we are all made in the image of God is yet another sin.
Treat all people with love and kindness,  but just because a person is generally nice, doesn’t mean that they are right about everything.

Give Up Your Stereotypes, Not Your Christian Convictions – Stand to Reason Blog.

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In righteousness shall you judge your neighbor

Leviticus 19:15 “You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor. 16 You shall not go around as a slanderer among your people, and you shall not stand up against the life of your neighbor: I am the Lord.

17 “You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason frankly with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him. 18 You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.

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What is evil, and where does it come from?

Who decides what is evil?

Is it the individual?

If it were for the individual to decide what is evil, then I could decide to do anything that was good for me, was good.
But if I were to decide to steal your Ipad I think we all know it would be wrong, even if it is good for me.
Moral relativist say we make up our own rules, but they all complain when someone cuts them off in traffic.

Is it societies that get to decide what is good and evil?
In 1933  Hitler’s Germany decided that it was OK to do a lot of do a lot of different things that shook the world to it’s core, including committing  mass murder. If societies get to decide what is good and evil and they decided that mass murder was OK then we could not say that Hitler was wrong. All we could say is we did not like what he did. But sane people all agree that what Hitler did was PURE EVIL. If a society could be that wrong about what is good, and what is evil then clearly societies do not decide what good and evil are.

Does evolution decide what is good and what is evil?

The core of evolution is about survival of the fittest reproducer. Evolution does not care about animals that are to far away to mate with. It is all about you and your pack.  If morality came from evolution it would be wrong to give up your resources, to help someone in a far off place who could not aid in your survival in the least little bit.

If evolution were the cause of morals then morals are all in the gene.
If that is the case then Hitler and Mother Theresa are different in the same way brown eyes , and blue eyes are different. We do not hold people accountable for things that are accidents of birth, but deep down in our souls we know that when someone shoots up a movie theater that person should be held accountable for their actions.
If anyone has ever done anything so evil that we know that person should be punished, then in can not be evolution that is responsible for morality.

The way I see it good and evil can only exist is if it is something that is discovered and not created.

Science can not account for most parts of it’s existence. But yet it is very real.I believe the best way to

account for the existence evil, is the absence or perversion of the good. And the best explanation for good is

God.

Our lives begin to end…

     People, especially Christians are way to silent now days. Please don’t use this post as an excuse to act like the  Westboro Baptist , I would never advocate acting like them, but we should not whitewash sin either! God forgives us our sins if we ask, but here on earth we are still subject to natural laws. When we sin we hurt people. Driving drunk gets people killed. Divorce without kids breaks hearts, divorce with kids tear apart lives. Kids from broken homes are more likely to suffer abuse, abuse drugs, live in poverty….. The list of earthly consequences for sin goes on and on.
While Matthew 7:1 which is about hypocritical judging is often taken out of context to make it about all judging. I will tell you what you won’t find in the Bible, any verse that commands us not to help people. When we refuse to judge sin we by our silence are endorsing the earthly consequences that occur because of the sin. Would it not be better to talk a person into joining AA, then to stay silent until the alcoholic ends up killing someone by driving drunk and going to jail ?  Is it not better to talk someone into going to a marriage councilor then to see a family split apart and a kids who feel alone in the world because they feel like one of their parents abandon them?  WE MUST NOT BE SILENT!

The world is a dangerous place.

      When we refuse to judge, we render ourselves powerless. We can’t tell people that they have done a good job, and we can not tell evil people to cool it!  I am so grateful for the Corrie ten Booms and the Irena Sendlers of this world. Their willingness to judge evil saved many lives.  To see so many Christians tell me that I should quit calling out the evil I see hurts my heart.
Not only is Matthew 7:1 taken out of context, but it simply doesn’t make sense to refuse to judge. When you pick out a babysitter for your kids, would you let someone who looked like they sold their body for crack baby sit, or would you prefer to miss work until you could find someone else to take care of your kids?

If you are at a store and see someone smack a kid so hard that they get a split lip and a bloody nose, that is something that a good person CAN NOT ignore! For the good of society sometimes you have to judge!
Now I realize that these cases are extreme, but I believe they prove that there are cases where judging is nessesary.

We must be tender with sinners, but not with sin.

The Phantom of the Opera

“You are afraid of me! Yet I am not really wicked. Love me and you shall see! All I wanted was to be loved for myself.”
The Phantom of the Opera

Those words are spoken by a man who was so badly deformed that his own mother forced him to wear a mask when he came near her. He had never been kissed, not even by his mother! While it does not excuse the evil he did, if you can put yourself in his shoes for just a moment. I think you can see how The Phantom Eric became really angry with the world.

We all to lesser extremes have unfortunate things in our past. Those unfortunate things can often drive a person to sin. When we are tempted to judge people we need to remember that we don’t know what that person has endured.

The local bully on the playground might be abused by someone in his/her family.
The prostitute you drove by yesterday could have been kidnapped by a pimp.

We should also remember that we are sinners too, we have no right to have a self righteous attitude toward the people we judge.
We judge to help someone not to beat them down.

While we should be angry at the sins of people, we need to remember that each person was made in the image of God, with a history that may make their sins viewable in a new light. While some sinners do need to be kept away from society because they are dangerous, all sinners need someone who will attempt to take them by the hand and say there is a better way.

The title of today’s blog is a quote by my pastor Bob Fuller.

Judging

During the Holocaust a lot of people risked their lives trying to stop the evil that was taking place all around them.

People like Irena Sendler who saved around 2,500 children! But in order to do this she had to JUDGE that there are evil people in the world. But to hear some talk you would think that her actions were evil because she had to judge others!

Police judge people all the time, while they are not the ultimate judge they do judge who gets to go home right away, and who goes to jail. When they judge they take people who are potentially dangerous to others off the street. They like Irena Sendler do a tremendous amount of good with their judging.

When a child comes home with all A’s on their report card, do you respond with how evil the teacher was to actually judge your child? Or are you happy that they judged your child? Positive reinforcement is another form of judgement.

The most commonly abused Bible verse is Matt 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged. But if one carefully reads the entire Bible you will discover many verses that reveal that this verse isn’t talking about all judging. It only refers to hypocritical judging.

2 Tim 4:2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

The word rebuke means to criticize sharply. Which is another way of saying judge.

Luke 17:3 So watch yourselves.“If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them.

1 Tim. 5:20But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning.

The word reprove means to scold or correct usually gently or with kindly intent, which is another form of judging.

Titus 1:13 This saying is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith

1 Corinthians 6:1-5 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints? Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church. I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?

While not all judging is good sometimes it is essential. We will one day judge angels and we are to get into practice by judging wisely here one earth.