Column: Abortion, Benhams and Bullying
Christians aren’t necessarily here to argue. Our primary mission is to shine God’s glory, love and light on Jesus Christ for the whole world to see.
But God help us all, humans love to argue anyway. Jesus wasn’t like that.
Jesus, in fact, rarely argued. Yes, at age 12 He rebuked his parents because they panicked when he’d not made the trip home with them after Passover (Luke 2:41-52). When they found Him teaching in Jerusalem’s temple, he said, “Don’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” No one understood all Jesus was saying but everyone was astonished at Jesus’ teaching, wisdom and stature.
At Cana, Jesus’ mother, Mary, suggested He replenish the dwindling wine supply (John 2:1-11). Jesus replied, “My time has not yet come,” but then ordered servants to fill the wine jars with water, which became exquisite wine – His first miracle.
Jesus didn’t argue with Satan in the desert; He quoted scripture (Matthew 4:1-11). After the resurrection Jesus gently told Peter, who had denied him three times, “Feed my sheep” (John 21:15-19). Jesus only showed anger once, scorning the money changers in the Temple (John 2:12-25, Matthew 21:12-13).
But nowhere in the Bible does Jesus mimic a modern CNN or Fox News guest by arguing vehemently against someone else’s opinion of truth or propriety. That’s because the truth of Christ is not dependent on human opinion. Jesus leads His flock, because He is the Way. He tells the truth, because He is the Truth. And He offers rebirth and new life, because He is Life.
Jesus sees all that is wrong with the world but avoids being a “clanging gong” (1 Corinthians 13:1) of angry argument. He calmly, often shrewdly, preaches the truth of a loving, forgiving God who is the worthy Lord of all Creation.
Rather than argue or even directly answer spiritual misstatements like those of the woman at the well, the Pharisees, his own disciples, and even his own family, Jesus tells parables, knowing the faithful will hear truth. Throughout, Jesus reveals God’s glory, sovereignty, Lordship and the new covenant in faith for human salvation.
This is on my mind as I consider society today that bullies those who would protect life in the womb (NARAL vs. Life Centers), cancels TV shows of Christian believers who think mom-dad-and-the kids is the Biblical and most practical definition of family (HGTV vs. the Benham brothers), and strives (à la Freedom From Religion) to silence those who would thank Jesus Christ publicly in prayer for His heavenly grace.
Jesus came not to win arguments, but to tell the truth.
That’s something we Christians should remember.
Walters (firstname.lastname@example.org) notes that Christian witness shines brighter without anger.