The anger of Christians in recent years is suffocating. While this anger lives in smaller measures within everyone, it also has the ability to spread like a contagion and become viral.
Let me give you a small sample of my Facebook feed recently:
• A Christian blogger accuses evangelicals of hating gay people.
• Christians blame each other for their own dwindling churches.
• Christians complain that society allows Muslims to be Muslims, but that same society forbids Christians to be Christians.
• Christians bicker about what various Bible passages mean.
• Christians fight about abortion.
• Christians fight about COVID.
• Christians fight with anti-gun activists about gun violence.
Don’t mishear me; I have opinions on every one of these issues. I have also in the past allowed myself to get a little combative with others on some of these issues. Consider that a confession of sin.
What shall we say about a body that fights with itself? Many of us leap to the occasion of answering questions like, “What would Christ say about the hatred toward gay people?” But maybe we should first be asking, “What would Christ say about the hatred toward each other?” When each person becomes convinced that their opinion on any given issue entitles them to do combat with fellow members, the body to which they belong faces an internal crisis.
Romans 12:10 reads, “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honour.”
The verse appears in a larger passage that describes a church that needs to function in unity with itself, submitting to Christ in all things. Later in the chapter (v 16), it reads, “Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.”
I wonder how most Christians today understand this last verse.
Elsewhere, Colossians 3:14 reads, “Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.”
Sure, the Bible warns us from cover to cover about sin and not falling into it. It tells us what sin looks like. However, it never compels us to stand on a mountaintop and continually remind unbelievers that they are sinful. I do recall it saying something about removing the log from one’s own eye and never mind the speck in the eye of a brother or sister.
A few of you might think that I advocate giving sinful people a free pass. I do not; that’s Jesus’ job.
But this has nothing to do with Christians fighting with Christians publicly about their differences of opinion. News flash: the age of the Earth is still a disputable matter, as it has been for over 2,000 years and we are no closer to answering the matter, biblically speaking. Calvinism vs. Arminianism has existed longer than Calvin and Arminius, so please show some grace. When Christians start calling other Christians heretics (my least favourite Christianese word) over every biblical dispute, we invite anger and disunity into our midst.
Therefore, my dear Christians, please stop fighting with each other. I cannot say it with greater force. We are called to unity by the One we claim to serve as slaves. Stop performing snide drive-bys toward each other on social media. If you catch me doing it, take me to task. Let’s pursue unity with intensity and chase anger out the front doors of our church.
If you are a practicing Christian, here is something you need to hear. If your heart and mind is that the addicted, impoverished, and broken people dug their own grave and the rest of society is not responsible for their bad mistakes, then I ask you to wake up.