Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: AGREE TO DISAGREE (05/04/17)
TITLE: Blood on My Hands
By Kate Oliver Webb
LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
ADD TO MY FAVORITES
It's not a nice friendly parable that teaches an important truth.
So if that's the kind of thing you're expecting when you begin reading this today, you might want to stop here and find something else to read.
You'll read a couple of stories, because what we're speaking of generally involves two or more human beings discussing a core theme or belief.
In this case, we're discussing the most important core belief there ever has been or ever will be: humanity's relationship with God.
Why is that so important? Because your relationship with God right now determines your entire future.
Now, here is where it gets sticky.
If you are an individual who has decided not to believe in God (notice I didn't say "who doesn't believe in God" because I doubt atheism actually exists) or who believes that there may be a God who set the universe in motion but no longer involves Himself in His creation, you're probably saying that this debate doesn't concern you.
Or if you believe that there are many ways to God, you might then say that agreeing to disagree is a peaceful and all-embracing solution to an uncomfortable conflict. It's currently popular to believe that, as we don't want to offend.
I have several friends with whom I've had "friendly" conflict on this subject. In each case, my position has been one of agreeing to disagree.
That was just chickening out.
My relationship with one friend began when we were both young mothers, attending the same evangelical church, listening to the same Biblical messages about Christ and His teachings and how they relate to our lives. In the intervening years, she lost a teen-aged son to an accident, fought two severe battles with cancer, and watched catastrophic challenges in the lives of family members who were also faithful to the Gospel of Christ. Her current position--as with many Christians, especially in America--is that Christ's message is one of love and acceptance, and so long as one believes and lives that "doctrine," one is bound for Heaven. To claim otherwise is offensive, hurtful, judgmental.
This "Gospel of Inclusion" is a seductive message. Using verses of Scripture taken out of context, it teaches that the God of love and acceptance, who is "not willing that any should perish" (2 Peter 3:9), will ultimately save everyone.
Another example of this conflict, closer to home, is my own sister. We were raised similarly, taught the same Bible stories, sang the same hymns and choruses, went to Vacation Bible School and church camps, and as we got older, taught little ones in Sunday School.
Our church experience was one of strict adherence to church doctrines, based in Scripture, but embellished with legalism. I'm not sure how other church members behaved in their own homes, but life in our home did not match what was preached in church.
My sister's life experiences colored her perception of faith in God, and who God is. I must confess that what she witnessed among the leadership in our church did not leave a positive message in the heart of a young girl who personally experienced some of life's messiest challenges.
My sister and I have had many discussions on this issue. I strongly believe in salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, as Scripture teaches. Those who have not accepted Christ's gift of salvation will spend eternity in hell, separated from God. It breaks my heart to know she doesn't believe in that Truth--but it IS Truth, nonetheless.
It's a choice. Jesus freely offers a relationship with God the Father for those who simply accept it. Those who don't will not go to Heaven.
It's like a group of travelers who want to reach the heart of a city, and so wait at the stop for the only bus so designated. Those who choose not to board that bus will not make it to the desired destination.
Both my sister and the friend mentioned earlier want to "agree to disagree." While that seems like the most comfortable solution, I cannot do that. I can't make their choice for them, but I must lovingly continue to speak the Truth, and pray that the Holy Spirit will lead them into the Kingdom of God.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
Accept Jesus as Your Lord and Savior Right Now - CLICK HERE
JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.