Think About This: “As Jesus looked across the horizon of His future, He could see many targets. Many flags were flapping in the wind, each of which he could have pursued. He could have been a political revolutionary, He could been content to be a teacher and educate our minds…But in the end He chose to be a Savior and save souls.”- Max Lucado
Freedom of Expression? Really?
Posted on October 25, 2023 by Elizabeth Welte in Freedom Fighters
“I, too, try to please everyone in everything I do. I don’t just do what is best for me; I do what is best for others so that many may be saved. And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 10:33-11:1 (NLT)
It’s funny how I kick back, at times, and watch the world try to re-invent the wheel. Whether we like or not, there are just some things out there that have an order to it, and we need to stick to that order or we’ll end up with a wheel that’s always flat on the bottom. But we have folks in this world that are hell-bent to prove they are right and will do so almost to the point of no return. It’s as if they lie in wait, looking for that moment to strike out and say, “I TOLD YOU SO!!” Then everything has to be changed in order for that moment of “I told you so” to last FOREVER. Even to the point where it is taken to a panel of judges and made the law of the land. Sad, but true…
It’s like this “freedom of expression” nonsense that we are surrounded by. The only thing I see expressed (for the most part) is that people want to intentionally behave badly and do NOT want to suffer consequence for it. They want to shove it under your nose and make you sniff it so that you get a whiff of it. It comes from so many different angles, and I guess the hope is that once we are saturated by it, we’ll become numb to it, and it will, therefore, gain acceptance. And dare not speak out against these people or you will be called things like…, well I gotta lot of words to put here, but if you have ears to hear, you get the gist. But one word that I think can get away with, without upsetting you all is INTOLERANT. And to be called that these days is a badge of honor in my book.
Intolerant was said of the Apostle Paul back in his day. When he was Saul, a “Pharisees Pharisee” he was intolerant of those who were following “The Way.”. So intolerant, that he hunted them down, with permission of The Sanhedrin, had them arrested, and then done-away-with. Now we aren’t too far away from this happening again, but keep in mind, society wants to re-invent the wheel without paying attention to its history. And it’s in that history where we see that Saul had a major encounter that forever changed the way he looked at everything. And that encounter was with someone who this present world wants to re-invent, and that person is Jesus Christ.
“Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” – Acts 9:4-5
His encounter was so deep and strong that it changed “The Way” forever, but Paul did not do this of his own doing. It took Jesus Christ to do it through him and he knew that. He preached it and suffered for it. He didn’t lose heart over it either, as a matter of fact, he would tell the church at Corinth to “imitate me as I imitate Christ.” And I’m sure that wasn’t the only place he said it. What they are placing under our noses, today, doesn’t smell of Christianity; it smells of heresy and pleases the world. After all, we don’t want to offend the offender with our intolerance of bad behavior.
Here’s what I am hoping to convey to you this day – just because the world around us has it upside down doesn’t mean it is okay for us to accept it. Our response to it all is key and if we can respond as Jesus did, then we can impart the same Grace to an unsaved world. Sometimes I think we, as Christians, have forgotten how to respond to intentional bad behavior with Grace. Instead, we get all Levitical about things and then the world gets to go “AH HA… I TOLD YOU SO!!” and the testimony of Jesus Christ’s saving Grace gets trampled underfoot and we along with it. Sad, but true. I realize it’s a fine balance to achieve, but we are called to achieve it. Remember, we are in the world and not of it. If there is suffering in it, take a look at The Cross and see what they can’t re-invent… even if they tried.
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris is a child of El Elyon, a son, a husband, and a father. He has an education in Biblical doctrine and is a graduate of The Colony of Mercy, 11/2003. He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6