Christians and the World

I know, it’s a big topic for a Friday.  And no one single blog entry is going to answer every question.  But here area few thoughts I’ve been challenged with this week (believe it or not I heard two different sermons about this topic while in the car out and about this week).

  1. There is no outward characteristic that makes someone a Christian.  As you interact with unbelievers, do you long for them to fit into certain characteristics, such as not smoking drinking, cussing, etc.?  Do you wish people would act a certain way, spend their money a certain way, or avoid certain places?  Even if they did, they still wouldn’t be a Christian!!
  2. Christians should be bold, yet controlled, in the way they relate to non-believers. In light of the first point, we shouldn’t be afraid to relate to people who don’t meet certain outward standards.  Now we shouldn’t join them in going to rob a bank if they invite us, but neither should we judge them if they’re having a drink with dinner.
  3. We should never begin the conversation with things we wish were different.  If you’ve just met someone, saying to them “Man, I wish you wouldn’t smoke” is not going to lead them to Christ.  Jesus didn’t meet people this way.  He related to them in the situations they were in, and he pointed them to righteous living in the context of lovingly telling people what it took to follow God’s ways.
  4. We should not fear open ended friendships with non-belivers.  I believe this.  Let me say it another way.  Isolating ourselves from unbelievers is a ridiculous way to evangelize.  Are we intentionally involved in relationships with people who don’t believe?
I hope this gets you thinking today.  I hope you’ll consider your passion to love people who aren’t believers.  Jesus died to show people the way to eternal life – let’s not hog that gift and keep it to ourselves!
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