As Christians we are asked to love, turn the other cheek and be humble in our actions. Then on the other hand, Paul tells us God does not expect us to be timid. Sounds like a contradiction, but look at 2 Timothy 1:7 that says, “God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and self-discipline.” Writing from prison, Paul tells Timothy to approach his work for the Lord with boldness, understanding the power given to him by the Holy Spirit. We all have power over sin and the forgiving grace of our Lord, but how we use it or if we use it, determine how we are following God’s will for our lives.
Our churches do a great job telling us what God has done for us, but where do we go from there? It has become socially acceptable to say we are Christian and believe in God, just as long as you don’t get carried away. If you look around your community at the number of churches and most of them are full, then multiply that by the number of communities around the country. You can easily see how many people consider themselves Christian, so my question is why are there so many problems in our society. Why do all the Christians across this country allow the sexual content you see on TV, accept abortion, and allow the assault on God in our schools and government.
On the news lately, there has been a lot of talk about the “Tea Party” group. Now my intention is not to support or bash this group, but my point is it appears to me these are regular folks who have collectively raised their voices against issues in government. Even though they are becoming more organized, they were not in the beginning. They just saw something they did not like and said we are not going to take it any more and protested, even though most had probably never protested anything before. What would happen if the millions of Christians in this country rose up and said, we want the ten commandments in our court houses, we want prayer in our schools or we will not let anyone take God out of any part of our lives.
Some time ago, I heard a well-known evangelist being interviewed on CNN about the negative influences of Hollywood on society and how it was contrary to the teachings of the Bible. His examples included how many celebrities were having babies out of wedlock, how they move from one relationship to another and how being gay was being celebrated. The host was literally laughing at this evangelist saying in this day and age a person has the right to live anyway they want to. He went on to defend each of the individuals mentioned in the examples, actually saying the evangelist was being ridiculous. Well in one way, the CNN host was correct in that each person does have the right to act anyway they wish, but God has clearly told us there are consequences to our actions, good and bad. This evangelist was boldly speaking up for what he believes and there should have been a flood of support from Christians that believe the same way.
In the verse above, not only are we told to use the spirit of boldness, but also of love and self-discipline. In our boldness to do as God has asked each of us, we must remember the love we are called to show in our actions and words. Then with the power over sin we are given, self-discipline of our actions keeps us on the narrow road God calls us to walk, with our heads held high and proclaiming boldly the goodness of God.
Steve Childers is the author of Catholic or Protestant: What our Churches Should Be Teaching. Visit www.CatholicOrProtestant.com
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