My Uncle Marvin, God rest his soul, had this pig name Rosie, which was probably the biggest beast I have ever laid eyes on. This thing was huge. It was very clear don’t put your hand inside Rosie’s pen and don’t get up on the top rung because you could fall off and you would be dead. Rosie looked sweet. She seems harmless and everything but she is dangerous. We have to be wise, not scared, just wise.
I Peter 3:15, “Always be prepared again to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have but do this with gentleness or respect.” Be prepared. Be prepared for what? To share our beliefs when we’re asked. That’s why the sign ladies, God bless them. I’m sure they have good hearts, and there’s probably a lot about that situation that I have no clue about. We don’t really know. We weren’t there. We don’t know the full context, but I don’t know if they were being asked. I don’t know if a lot of times sign holders have been asked.
Can you come and hold some signs up at our event? Or when it’s absolutely necessitated. If somebody is on their deathbed and they need to hear the truth I’m not going to withhold it. I’m not going to be as patient in that moment, because there is an urgency there. Be as relationally as possible. I think it’s important that we always remember that we can only be as truthful as the relationship will warrant and allow unless it’s under special circumstances.
Do so in a kind, compassionate, gentle, and loving manner versus a scared, punitive, threatening, or overly cautious way. We can remember Romans 11:32 for comfort, that God’s in it, it’s time-limited and it’s for purpose. When we get into right versus wrong we need to remember that it may be right or true or it may be wrong, but it’s foolishness to people who don’t care about God. I know sometimes we’re tempted to get into thinking that we have to defend our rights. I don’t see Jesus ever addressing the rights of his followers with the powers that be in government. I’m not saying we can’t do that. I’m just saying that if we major on defending rights, versus reaching people and serving them we lose. I kind of wonder too sometimes since things aren’t so commonly in the media characterized as legal issues and about rights and we live in sort of this victim mentality culture that if we buy into that, and if we’re not maybe answering a fool according to his folly and be like him. I think we have to be careful of that.
If that’s where you’re at, and that’s what you’re doing I bless you where you’re at. I bless you and what you doing. You’re called to do your thing. I want to advocate though that by and large we be as compassionate, kind, gentle and not threatening in everything we do. 1 Corinthians 10:13, “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.” It’s applicable to the believer that you have a relationship with that’s struggling and it’s applicable to the nonbeliever. It’s common to man. There really is no special population. If 98% of all males have masturbated it’s really the 1 – 2% that are the special ones. In other words, sexual struggle is so pervasive in our culture that it’s really more about how can we relate and what do we have in common rather then how are you different. That being said I understand that certain aspects of certain struggles make for the necessity of certain sensitivity. If you have a particular a question about that not that we want to over focus on one end of the lust continuum or another but however a person struggles we just don’t want to emphasize when reaching out to them the differentness of their struggle is the point I’m trying to make.
Matthew 22:16 “Teacher, they said, we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by men because you pay no attention to who they are.” This gets back to what we started off talking about, Jesus being the logos and using words. In our culture we sometimes get swayed by men in the way that we talk. Somebody asked me earlier, if we can talk in certain places or in certain ways or there’s an opportunity to speak in a more redeemed vernacular what are some of those examples? I’ll throw out some of them for you to consider but this is by no means an exhaustive or definitive list. You might have some ideas yourself. I need them and I welcome them. How can we redeem cultural terminology and speak about it with its redeemed biblical meaning?
Excerpt from Biblical Sexuality& The 21st Century by Rev. Jayson Graves, M. MFT
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