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Jerk. Idiot. Karen. Stupid. Woke. Liberal.

It’s a wild way to start a blog post, right?

So why are these names coming out of Christians’s mouths aimed right at the heart of others? I don’t know.

Strong opinions on matters that don’t matter to God cause Christians to behave in ways that don’t reflect Jesus’s heart.

I hope that doesn’t describe you.

It’s always discouraging to see believers choosing to live and sound like the world because of their opinionated views of others.

“Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them. And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he has identified you as his own, guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.”
Ephesians 4:29–30 (NLT)

Across the board, the influence of evangelicalism is on the decline in the United States and beyond. This is the consistent theme of many news articles, surveys, polls, and web stories. It’s also observationally obvious.

In response, leaders, even from the pulpit, spout off anecdotal comments with name-calling and belittling, like “Oh, that’s the liberal media. Oh, that’s wokeism. Oh, that’s ______”

Fellow Christian, when did calling people names ever work for you, even on the schoolyard as a kid? How does name-calling help you reach hearts with the love of Christ?  Can you think of one positive outcome of belittling another?

Many ‘Christians’ have lost their gospel bearings. They have jumped into the fray with unchristlike responses to a culture that desperately needs to know Jesus. Remember, Jesus Himself was most demanding of the religious elite, who had lost touch with the true servant heart of God. The culture was the pond where He taught the disciples to be fishers of men.

Friend, that’s one of the reasons why the Church today has such a lousy reputation and lacks the true power inherent within it. Responding to our culture and the antichrist spirit among us with defensiveness and name-calling won’t progress the gospel. It’s time to return to basics, simplicity, and prioritizing the Gospel and His Word.

“Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law.”
Romans 13:8 (NLT)

Jesus was born into an extremely antichrist culture, so much so that within 30 years, the culture crucified Christ. Yet He was able to light a fire of revival and life that still changes lives today.

Before He died, Jesus promised to build His Church.

“And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.”
Matthew 16:18 (NKJV)

Declining or not, the true Church of Jesus continues! The Church must be clear about its mission. The gospel is offensive and exclusive. It’s not a message of tolerance; it’s a message of repentance.

However, you, the messenger, don’t have to be offensive. You don’t have to put others down to establish your viewpoint somehow. It’s sinful. The person you are putting down has been created in the image of God. Jesus died for them. We are to love our enemies, do good, and bless those who curse us.

Take the good news of Jesus into all the world, baptizing believers and teaching them to obey Christ’s commands. This is not cold and calculated but warm and loving. The Spirit of God uses us in beautiful ways as we confront the truth in love, looking to capture the heart even more than convince the mind.

Never forget the Church’s message is hope, freedom, and life. It’s a message that Jesus is the only way to have a relationship with God the Father. He loves us enough to die for our sins so that we can be forgiven and have eternal life. The world today needs this hope! This is the most incredible message ever given, and it is the Church’s responsibility to proclaim it.

 

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