Tuesday, January 10, 2012

How Good Are We—Really?

It is common understanding that we, humans, are not the pillars of righteousness and beauty we think we are. We have more shortcomings than we care to admit—especially when it comes to the issue of confronting culture with the truth.

A recent study from Penn State University found that half the students said they would object if someone made a sexist comment; but in practice, fewer than one-sixth had ever said anything in objection to a comment like that.

In essence, we are afraid to confront society about things we think are politically incorrect. Especially, are we uncomfortable when it comes to telling people about our belief in Christ. In this matter, we need to remember the words of Christ, himself: “Everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32, 33)

Despite the prevalent idea that living a good, Christian, lifestyle before an unbelieving world will make people want to emulate the Christian belief that motivates such a lifestyle, this kind of “presence evangelism” just does not work. Words must be used. It is not possible for an unbeliever to distinguish a Christian from a Hindu or a Muslim based on a perceived moral lifestyle—those sects all look the same when judged on the basis of outward morality. But…there is a great difference; and it must be articulated in words.

Reader, do not despair! Telling the truth publically is not so dangerous. I remember a saying that was used by my Scoutmaster years ago: “If public opinion had any real power to harm, the skunk would have been extinct long ago.”

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