The Bible says we should meditate on the Word. For a few weeks now, I have been meditating on forgiveness. Before I share my opinion, my experiences and my revelations, I want to hear yours. If you have had an experience with God, relating to forgiveness, please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and tell me about it. I don’t want to get sermons, nor reference of books, authors, teaching etc. I want to know what happened to YOU, in this regard. First hand. Tell me!
2017 was one of the hardest years ever. I don’t want to repeat it. My husband and I went through a year of living hell, for reasons I do not care to share. We were relieved when the 1st of January came, and brought with it a new chapter.
This morning, I watched a sermon from Elevation Church, Steven Furtick. If anybody can preach me into a joyous mood, it’s that guy. He has a whole new look on the challenges of life. And I love it. Let’s face it, all these ‘so-called’ pastors, that preach prosperity, is talking a load of hogwash. Jesus told us it won’t be easy. The apostles showcased hardship for us in the New Testament. Nowhere are we promised a life of prosperity. True FAITH is holding on, DESPITE the circumstances!
If you had a hard year in 2017, I challenge to you to watch this sermon. Take an hour of your time, and invest it into your spiritual account of 2018!
Christmas time is not the only time of the year, where Christians violently attack each other, and non-believers, in word wars on social media. It happens with Valentine’s Day. It happens with Passover / Easter. It happens with Halloween. It happens at Christmas. EVERY.DAMN.YEAR.
It happens in other situations as well. Christians differ widely on issues such as the consumption of alcohol, smoking, obesity and others.
We need to get back to basics. And what is basics? The written Word of God, the Bible.
Let’s look at Romans 14 in this regard.
Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. 2 One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. 4 Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.
5 One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind.6 Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.
10 You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister[a]? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. 11 It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will acknowledge God.’”[b]
12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister.14 I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15 If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.
22 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. 23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.
What are the ‘basics’ in this chapter?
- Acceptance, without quarrelling over disputable matters;
- Respect for each other, as God has accepted us all;
- We will differ on our choice of sacred days, and that is okay – we don’t have to agree with each other, we still have to respect each other;
- Stop judging people who do not share your sentiments;
- Don’t place stumbling blocks in the path of another – if a person chooses to abstain from something, respect that choice even though you don’t agree with it; and
- Whatever you believe about these things, is an issue between you and God, not between you and the entire world that has to be fought out on social media.
So what am I saying? Stop it. Just stop it. You are doing nothing to bring unity in the Kingdom of God. Instead, you are causing strife in the body of Christ. What another Christian believes, is none of your business. It is between him/her and God. Keep your nose out of it. And keep quiet on social media. Your lashing out at innocent people is very damaging to the image of Christianity. Get back to the basics.