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Josh Mounce - February 4, 2018
Am I Right?
From Series: "Ask Better Questions"
Does it seem these days that people don't ask good questions? Questions come with barbs all over them, or are asked in such a way that the answer is already obvious. God coming into the world raises some big questions about how we live in the wake of his coming. But we need to ask the right questions. This series will explore the questions asked of Paul by the Christians in Corinth. We'll get at the questions behind their questions, to the good news for all of us - even here at the dawn of the 21st century. Jesus has come into the world, and nothing has been the same since.
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I know that some of us have gotten in a yelling match or two with family over some stupid stuff. For my wife and I? It was a shouting match over dishes that ended in me yelling that she didn’t really love me, and her yelling back, “You’re acting like my 5-year-old sister!” Yeah… not a real proud moment there. So, it’s not too surprising that churches have argued or even split over some pretty ridiculous stuff. How ridiculous? Here’s a few:
- The appropriate length of the worship pastor’s beard
- Whether the worship leader should have his shoes on during the service
- The Lord’s Supper had cran-grape juice instead of plain grape juice
- Two different churches reported fights over the type of coffee. In one of the churches, they moved from Folgers to a stronger Starbucks brand. In the other church, they simply moved to a stronger blend. Members left the church in the latter example.
- Some church members left the church because one church member hid the vacuum cleaner from them. It resulted in a major fight and split.
While these are downright ridiculous (and hopefully we don’t have any fights over beard length here,) they speak to a deeper issue: the fact that we as the church, the body of Christ, are KNOWN for our arguing and in-fighting. But our arguments aren’t always about silly things, sometimes it’s over a core issue that really hits home with us personally. I have seen churches split over homosexuality, finances, and alcohol.
And the thing to remember is that the vacuum fight wasn’t really about the vacuum. There was an issue under that issue that went unaddressed for a long time.
We fight over big and small things, dividing over who’s right. But there’s a better way. What I’m proposing to you is this: that our “religion” and relationship with Christ is not about determining who is right and who is wrong. It’s about connecting people to Jesus. I am not saying that these issues should brushed under the rug, but our deep lack of unity over both the trivial and the important has hurt us, Christ’s image, and our witness.
Let’s refuse to be morality police, always looking at each other and constantly judging and evaluating. Because man, is that exhausting.