It should come as no surprise that sometimes well-meaning, sincere Christians can disagree with each other on how to best live out their faith. Sometimes, those differences can run deep.
For example, in Jesus’ time, we see an example of two disciples who had vastly different political views. There was Matthew, a former tax collector – he was a Jewish representative of the Roman government. There was also Simon the Zealot – he was part of a group that actively sought to violently overturn that same Roman government.
Both followed and served Jesus.
This week you may have heard of news story and surrounding analysis and commentary that highlight how some Christians are taking different views on an important topic.
A recent bill proposed in Kansas sought to protect the religious rights of the citizens of the state. While some Christians, like Eric Metaxas, Ryan Anderson, Andrew Walker and Russell Moore (here and here) defended the principles behind the bill, others – like columnist and pundit Kirsten Powers and Pastor Andy Stanley – issued sharp criticism of it.
Focus has healthy relationships with all of the believers I’ve just listed. We’ve featured all of them in one way or other in our broadcasts, magazines or other resources.
I'm returning from the National Religious Broadcaster's Convention in Nashville and want to share two thoughts on the subject:
One, I understand that Bible-believing Christians faced with this situation may proceed very differently. Some may see it as an opportunity to love and serve a homosexual couple with the hope that it might open the door to share the Gospel. Others will not want to be complicit in something they view as sinful and harmful. My point here is not to argue which is the right approach, but it is to say that as Christians privileged to live in the United States, we should have the right to act in accordance with our conscience.
This is also yet another reminder that good Christians will sometimes disagree over important issues. While there are certainly some non-negotiables in our faith, there are also areas of freedom where we can differ on how to best live out our faith. By all means, let’s passionately defend what we believe, and let’s engage in honest conversation and debate.
The First Amendment guarantees Americans the right to exercise our deepest convictions not just in our churches on Sundays, but in our everyday lives – at home, at work, and in the public square.
But above all things, let’s remember that what makes us brothers and sisters in the faith is the blood of Jesus Christ and His grace alone.
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