Thursday, April 6, 2017

Dealing With People With Opposing Ideas - Part 1

I was thinking yesterday about the difference of people with opposing ideas versus enemies and how we must be careful to tell the difference and not be quick to declare someone an enemy.

"Now John answered and said, 'Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us.' But Jesus said to him, 'Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is on our side.' Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem, and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, they entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him. But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem. And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, 'Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?' But He turned and rebuked them, and said, 'You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. 'For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them.' And they went to another village." - Luke 9:49-56 NKJV

Here is a passage that shows God dealing with a true enemy.

"To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David. Hear my voice, O God, in my complaint; preserve my life from dread of the enemy. Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked, from the throng of evildoers, who whet their tongues like swords, who aim bitter words like arrows, shooting from ambush at the blameless, shooting at him suddenly and without fear. They hold fast to their evil purpose; they talk of laying snares secretly, thinking, 'Who can see them?' They search out injustice, saying, 'We have accomplished a diligent search.' For the inward mind and heart of a man are deep. But God shoots his arrow at them; they are wounded suddenly. They are brought to ruin, with their own tongues turned against them; all who see them will wag their heads. Then all mankind fears; they tell what God has brought about and ponder what he has done. Let the righteous one rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him! Let all the upright in heart exult!" - Psalm 64:1-10 ESV

Slander is a great litmus test, isn't it? The Devil is called the accuser of the brethren for a reason.

Grace and the finished work never give us grounds to slander anyone. Pointing out error is one thing but we are still for the person even if we are on 'the other side of the fence' about certain issues.

God will shoot an arrow suddenly at our true adversaries in due season until then we battle not against flesh and blood and every soul has immeasurable value.

In the heat of conflict, I want to have the right Spirit. Sometimes that speaks louder than our words anyway.


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