Compassion will cure more sins than condemnation.
I have often written about judgement sometimes being necessary, but it is something that we must be very careful with. You can judge someone without being mean. When we judge, we must not lose sight of the fact that we are sinners too! I am made ill by the nasty comments I often see by people claiming to be Christian.
I recently heard a story on the show “Gutsy Christianity” about a man who created a questionable piece of art. Christians from all over the area were protesting, send him death threats and one even came to the place it was being displayed with a tire iron and busted up the glass that protected the piece and ripped it up. Meantime a brand new Christian pastor was being pressured to make some comments about the “art”. Instead of flying off the handle he wrote a polite note to the artist asking him to interpret the piece for him.
It turned out that the piece wasn’t about Christianity in general, it was a statement on the sex scandle of the Catholic Church. This pastor and artist became friends. The pastor asked the artist if he would create another piece depicting a more respected Jesus for this pastor’s church, and in the process of describing Jesus for the author he also shared the Gospel with the man. This artist hasn’t yet given his life to Christ, but he did present the Church with an awesome piece of art. Because of the kindness this pastor showed this man his outlook on Christianity is a lot more friendly then it was before, and multiple artist in his community are now Christians.
Hate chases people away from Christ. This man wanted nothing to do with a Christ that would endorse the kind of hate that was being aimed at him, by people claiming to be Christ representatives. But when faced with the Christ of compassion he became more compassionate, and so did many others.
Jesus isn’t just the God of love, he is the God of judgement as well. When we interact with the world we must do our best to be like him.
Judging when necessary, but NEVER overlook compassion.
“Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one–the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts,…Your affectionate uncle, Screwtape.”
— C.S. Lewis (The Screwtape Letters )
Drug addicts don’t wake up one morning and suddenly decide that they will become so addicted to drugs that they will throw away everything to get another high. They usually start out with “just this one time”. Then the addict changes to “just one more time” and the unfortunate keep adding just one more time it till they are willing to do unthinkable things just to get the next high.
Many sins start out really small, committing sins that can easily be rationalized away by most. I am sure many affairs have started out “I am just thinking about my hot secretary, it isn’t like I am touching her, and my wife will never find out.” I am not saying that every small sinful thought will turn into a life shattering event, but it can. We all commit these “little” sins from time to time. We can’t help it. It is human nature, but the closer we draw to God the chances of this happening gets smaller. In an age where our culture is calling good things bad, and bad things good focusing on God, Family, and the duties of the church are increasingly important. They will help you avoid the safest road to hell.
Note: by hell I am not just referring to the place where sinners experience judgement, but an earthly hell that we experience when our life falls to pieces.
When you have God on your side you never know just how far you can go. While yes there are some things that are logically impossible, like you can not be at two places at the same time, there are ways to work around them. If God wants it to be it will be, no matter how small you think you are. Dream hard, pray hard, and work hard and you will find a way. If God is with you, you will never walk alone.
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
Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting a few drops on yourself.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have a friend that has an amazing talent. No matter how bad of a mood I am in she can make me laugh! I have been on the verge of tears, within a few minutes of getting into her car I am laughing hysterically! One day I was talking to her about this and she mentioned that I had a similar effect on her.
I also have someone else in my life that complains about EVERYTHING! She has all the personality of a thunder storm. When she walks into a room it doesn’t matter how happy you are, in a very few minutes you will be sad and depressed. Emotions are extremely contagious things.
When I used to work (I am not healthy enough now) I used to have a boss that constantly stressed that we needed to smile at all of our customers. I noticed something back then that I seemed to have forgotten for far to long. Fake smiles rarely stay fake! If you find yourself in a bad mood all the time try smiling at the people you pass during your daily life. At least some of those people will smile back! Before long their better moods will rub off on you and that smile that you gave them as a gesture of friendliness, will turn into a genuine smile of happiness!
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.
“How far that little candle throws his beams. So shines a good deed in a weary world.”
― William Shakespeare