“They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!” 2 Timothy 3:4-5 (NLT)
As we were sittin’ around our break area, the conversation turned into just how bad it all really has gotten. It’s not that the guys took a side and declared their own self-righteousness in the matter, on the contrary, they commented on how you just can’t say anything anymore without someone getting flat out offended by it. This allowed enough space for me to share what the apostle Paul told Timothy in the third chapter of 2 Timothy, “…and this was written in a time in history where the Roman Empire pretty much ruled the roost. Ya can’t get much worse than that.”
When I was done with my moment, I was asked who are “they?” My reply came out fast (as if the Holy Spirit needed to interrupt) “They are the ones on the other of side of the street, who are probably saying the same things about us.” It got quiet, the buzzer rang and we went back to work. But as I walked towards the back of the shop, co-worker Jim Kelly came to me and said, “It’s all in the Book isn’t it?” My reply was simple… “yeppers.”
So being the good Berean I think myself to be, I thought it best to get to my toolbox, open my Bible, and double-check what I was referencing. Sure enough, I was in the ballpark and I began to wonder about those on the other side of the street who would think ill of me because of where I stand. Someone much wiser than me once reminded me to, “Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” (Romans 12:18) but lately it has become easier to, “Stay away from people like that” (2 Tim 3:5b) Why is that? Disunity.
I’m not saying that Bible-believing Christians need to unify with the pagan population of Secularland so we all can sing a verse or two of Kumbaya, what I am saying is that Bible-believing Christians need to unify with Bible-believing Christians. We’ve caused ourselves great harm recently by allowing ourselves to get caught up on who should be the POTUS and not focused enough on WHO really allows that to happen. This may require us to look at our hearts, through Scripture and see where we truly are.
The king’s heart is like a stream of water directed by the LORD; He guides it wherever He pleases.” (Proverbs 21:1) Whether he protects your religious freedoms or not, the king’s heart, whether he likes it or not, is directed by the LORD. Yes, you can argue the king’s heart being wicked, and it may have merit, but YHVH hardened Pharaohs heart towards God’s chosen and you’re more than welcomed to read the Exodus story for yourself to see how that turned out.
“People may be right in their own eyes, but the LORD examines their heart.” (Proverbs 21:2) Ya gotta check out Luke 6:43-45 for this one in its entirety because how Jesus caps it off is classic. And if I be allowed a bit of license here, “For out of the abundance of the heart his qwerty board speaks.” What we’re doing, as Christians, on social media is showing the population of Secularland just how divided we are. Who wants to come to a church where there is a red section and a blue section?
“The LORD is more pleased when we do what is right and just than when we offer Him sacrifices.” (Proverbs 21:3) Guess I’m gonna mic drop this on ya’s, “But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” (Matthew 6:3) Why? “So that your giving may be done in secret. And your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:4)
If there was anything that you could glean from 2 Timothy is that Paul and Timothy were unified on the teachings of Jesus Christ. It is in this that Paul would tell Timothy to, “Remind everyone about these things, and command them in God’s presence to stop fighting over words. Such arguments are useless, and they can ruin those who hear them” (2 Timothy 2:14)
Public debate may be a good thing but if we keep casting a weary eye on the ones that are on our side of the street those on the other side will never wanna cross over…and that’ll be to our shame. That’s not what Jesus woulda done. He was all about making things right, actually I dare to say that reconciliation was always His mission. If we claim the name then we should do the same. Then, we’ll all be on the same side of the street. Amen?
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris is a husband, a father, has an education in Biblical doctrine and is a graduate of The Colony of Mercy. He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org