Thursday, March 16, 2006

Tolerance . . .

I open my blog with a post on tolerance. As you get to know me, maybe you'll find out why.

If you go to, you will find their definitions of the word "tolerance". I've come to the conclusion that the world has become tolerant of just about everything but Christian values. Oh, people say that Washington is brainwashed by Christianity and that Christians are hateful and hypocritical and just mean-spirited; but that's not true Christianity, or maybe Christianity in the hands of people who use the name of "Christ" for their own selfish motives. People who would murder (car-bombing abortion clinics or mosques or physically attacking homosexuals or those of different faiths) in the name of Christ are not true Christians.

When you look at Christianity at its purest--that is, when you look at Christ Himself, who is the only perfect Christian--He loved people who were sinners in the eyes of the world. But this does't mean that He tolerated their sinfulness. He would by no means harm a sinner, but He would show the sinner his sin and bring about repentance, and then forgive the person of his sin.

Now I don't claim to be perfect by any stretch of the imagination, except maybe being a perfect sinner. No one is perfect. We are all sinful and fall short of the glory of God. That makes me a hypocrite in some ways, sure. I am not always consistent, though I try to be; and when I fail, I pray for God's forgiveness. But as one who stands "in the stead of Christ" in my vocation as a pastor, I have a duty to speak the truth, even when that truth is not popular. That means I'm not going to tolerate abortion or pre-marital sex or affairs or anything else the world says I should tolerate, because to do so would to be unfaithful to my Lord Jesus Christ. I will show the love of Christ to homosexuals and Muslims and even to those who mis-use the name of Christ; but I will not tolerate their sin, any more than I tolerate my own.

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