Witnessing Like and For Christ
It seems like social media is turning more and more into a place where people like to do battle. Some people feel free to post their opinions, “which happens to be right”,and is immediately attacked by someone who not only disagrees, but feels obligated to criticize, correct, judge, and then follow up with some name calling. This is such a sad state of affairs, but what makes it sadder and disappointing is to see those who claim to be followers of Jesus Christ right in the middle of all that mayhem.
In the sermon on the mount (Matt 5:14-15), Jesus said, You are the light of the world. A city situated on a hill cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket, but rather on a lampstand, and it gives light for all who are in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.
We are not instructed to criticize or find fault in people. Instead, we should be reaching out to those who are hurting, caring for those who can’t care for themselves, or just coming along side someone who is struggling. We have the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the love of Christ and to love like Christ, especially within the body of believers.
The parable of the good Samaritan in Luke 10 is a good example of this. The Samaritan man didn’t do a background check to determine who the injured man was or try to determine why he was injured or if he was at fault for his circumstances. His immediate assessment was that this man was hurting and he felt compassion for him, and did something to help.
Whether we acknowledge it or not, we all hear, read or see things through a specific lens based on our personal life experiences. We establish biases based on these experiences, whether they are good, bad, or indifferent. The result is that we tend to respond to situations accordingly. That is why so many people are arguing or insisting that their position is the right one. Just because we have never experienced abuse, racism or any prejudices, we can’t assume that it is not a problem, and we can’t make light of it.
Systemic racism is a reality in our country. Our judicial system is not perfect. It is flawed. Our police force throughout the country has problems. As long as there are humans serving in these positions of authority, it will have problems. This justice system that we are commanded by Scripture to submit to, the one that is flawed is still accountable to God who will judge everyone righteously.
I was asked if I believe black lives matter, my response was, absolutely! We need to have a yes/no attitude in responding. They either matter or they don’t. Those who are protesting are not saying that only black lives matter, or that their lives are more important than others. It’s just a statement that is made after years and years of abuse and racial injustice. This is a reality, and I choose to love and care for those who have had to and continue to live with this. I also think it is wrong to automatically associate those who are protesting with the rioting and looting that is also taking place, or those who are wanting to have “no police” zones.
Ultimately, we are all responsible and accountable to God for our actions in these circumstances. This includes the fact that we need to refrain from sinning, whether it’s in our actions, our attitudes and even what we harbor in our hearts. We need to remain humble and have an attitude that wants to be part of the solution and not part of the problem. The best way to be part of the solution is to be more Christ-like so that we may be a witness for Him.
Pastor Bryan Kahue