Monday, June 15, 2015

June 16, 2015

"Love is patient, love is kind." I Corinthians 13:4

I want to add some perspective to my recent posts on patience and my message Sunday. While being patient is evidence of God's love, being passive isn't.

It is important that you understand the difference between being patient and being passive.

Let me give you an illustration.

I believe that abortion is one of the greatest evils ever visited upon our nation. I will never remain silent or passive about this hideous violence perpetrated against the most innocent in our society.

So, I participate in pro-life events and rallies whenever possible. Let's say I am at such an event and an abortion supporter comes up to me and begins to threaten and harass me, I must remain patient and return grace for his grief.

Do you see the principle?

God's love requires that I remain patient when I am personally opposed. But I must not remain patient or passive when God's truth and righteousness is under attack.

That is what Jesus did!

He demonstrated INCREDIBLE patience when he stood before those who accused Him and abused Him! He patiently allowed them to nail Him to a cross. But He also drove the money-changers from the temples with a whip and pushed over all the tables. That was anything but a passive response to the desecration of a sacred space!

Do you recall when He rebuked Peter saying, "Get behind me, Satan?"

That was not patient and it certainly wasn't passive!

If you think about it, we Christians have discredited the faith by getting this 180 degrees out of phase. Don't you think we have shown the tendency to be passive toward evil and unrighteousness while being impatient with personal attacks? Can't you see how harmful that can be?

This is a variation of the theme, "All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good people to remain silent." However, it is compounded by the impact of good people not only remaining silent in response to evil, but by overreacting to the insignificant.

Godly love demands that His people be properly patient while no being improperly passive. It takes the power and wisdom of the Holy Spirit to get it right in both cases!

Got it?

Get it!