This morning at Midnight (Jan. 20, 2018), the government of the United States shut down again. The Democrats are calling this shutdown, "Mr. Trump's Shutdown" and the Republicans are calling it, "Mr. Shumer's Shutdown." I don't know about you, but I really can't ever recall a time when the government of the United States was so enmeshed in such division. I realize that even in the early days of our nation there was great divide between the leaders; yes, even duels have been fought as a result, but these days, I'm certain that if dueling were still legal there would be a whole lot of gun smoke in the air!
The division hold true within the ranks of the Church as well. On Facebook last night a person made a statement like this, "If you believe in the doctrine of "once saved always saved" you are a heretic. Lately, I've been trying to avoid commenting on such foolish statements, but in a weaker moment I felt to respond with something like, "I guess that I'm a heretic then!" Within a few moments I realized that I had been unfriended and blocked by the person who wrote the original post. Being unfriended on Facebook isn't a new thing to me. It happens often. When people get nasty on my posts, calling me or others nasty names, etc., I also unfriend and block them. I don't mind if people disagree with me, but when they become nasty about it (fighting a duel) I fire back and "nuke" them. But, I felt that the guy's actions last night were a little dramatic. He just didn't want anyone challenging his position. Hummm....just like the Republicans and Democrats!
So, what's with it these days? Why are people so touchy? It's like no two people think alike....and they are totally dogmatic and defensive about their beliefs. Have you ever wondered about this? It's like not only do people disagree with each other's beliefs, but they disagree to such a degree that they are willing to fight about it; like last night's shutdown! No one wants to give up one inch on what they believe. Why is this? I know that this is a stretch, but do Republicans think from the right side of their brain and Democrats think from the left side of their brains? How in the world can two people think so opposite about their beliefs?
Yep, this division is within the Church these days as well! I've had Christians call me some pretty nasty names as they have disagreed with my teaching. In the early days of me teaching new covenant grace to our church, after some life changing revelations came to me, several people left our congregation, and some of them didn't leave quietly either. People I loved and ministered to called me some very nasty names, all because they didn't agree with me.
Sadly, I don't have any answers to the questions I raise. However, I do know this, there are some things that I can never abide with. From the politics side; I could never vote or support a person who believes in abortion. To me that is murder and even if they were running for County dog catcher and they belonged to a party that supported abortion, that person would never get my vote, now matter how good of a dog catcher they might be. From the side of my theological beliefs; I never could attend or support a church that taught a mixed message of law and grace. Now, I can love the abortion believing dog catcher, and the Church person who teaches law, but I certainly can't support them. Those are a couple of lines that I've drawn in the sand. Hummm....I wonder if I think out of the left or right side of my brain? I guess I'll never know! How about you?
Grace and peace!