Friday, August 07, 2009

Our Moral Responsibility

Originally posted on Wednesday, 10 November 2004

When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or who are greedy or are swindlers or idol worshipers. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. What I meant was that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a Christian yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or a swindler. Don’t even eat with such people. It isn’t my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your job to judge those inside the church who are sinning in these ways. God will judge those on the outside; but as the Scriptures say, “You must remove the evil person from among you.” ~ 1 Corinthians 5:9-13; NLT

The greatest frustration I have with the Church in the United States is our political involvement. We are horrified that the people of the world are acting like the people of the world and we want to be put a stop to it. The result has been Christians mobilized to go to the voting booths to vote their “conscious” so that the country they live in will reflect their morals.

As a result Christians have forgotten two important truths. First, people without Jesus are not saved, no matter how they live. The heterosexual couple living together outside of marriage is just as evil as the homosexual couple seeking to be married; God draws no distinction between the two. By keeping them from doing certain behaviors doesn’t make them people fit for Heaven. While we would love for the entire country to have the same morals as we do it isn’t morality which saves people. People living seemingly moral lives helps us forget their great need for a Savior.

Second, the greatest danger to the Church of Jesus Christ is not the morality of the world, but the morality of those who call themselves Christians. This is where the Church should focus their energy; not the immorality of the world. When so-called Christians fail to live up to the teachings of Jesus then the Truth we have to share loses its value in the eyes of the world.

Church, you want to make a difference in this world? You want to stop abortions from happening? You want people to live moral lives? Then get out into the world and live like followers of Jesus. Love the unwed mothers. Care for the helpless and the weak. Take time to make a difference in the community you live in. The early church made an impact in their world not because they petitioned the Roman government, but because they sacrificed and lived like Disciples of Christ.

In the Old Testament the morality of Israel was very important. Under the New Covenant what matters is not the morality of a nation, but the morality of God”s People, the Church. When the Church lives the way God has commanded it effect the world. Our main concern as Christians is not getting our moral agenda passed by the Government, but living moral lives which affect those around us.
Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we must care for orphans and widows in their troubles, and refuse to let the world corrupt us. ~ James 1:27 (NLT)

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