“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29
We are to use our words to give grace to all who hear them. But if you are like me, you are finding it more and more difficult to pick the right words to say when someone voices an opinion vastly different than your own Christian beliefs. As Christians, we know God’s expectations for us: love God, love others, and strive to build relationships with all people both Christians and nonbelievers. Why should we be concerned about those who are nonbelievers? Because we were called to plant seeds and lead others to Christ. And what if nonbelievers around you use hateful speech and profess things you know are wrong or sinful? It happens. It is becoming almost impossible to have conversations with people who have beliefs completely different than your own.
“When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.” Proverbs 10:19.
Restrain our lips? Should we simply not talk? When nonbelievers tell us their beliefs, which are outside what we know God wants for our world, what do we say? It does not serve us well to take a “I am more pious than you” attitude. That gets us nowhere. Individuals with erroneous beliefs have likely been misinformed or have had events in their histories which may have shaped or contributed to these misunderstandings. But are we simply to remain silent? How can we speak in the midst of nonbiblical beliefs?
As Christians, we know we should have no other God before us and that God alone created the universe and our purpose in it, including the creation of and purpose for men and women. Do we sit idly by as others tout things we know are simply not true? Do we not respond when others threaten our Christian values and way of life? Do we not act when our families are threatened by the actions of nonbelievers?
“I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12: 36-37
“There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12: 18
One example of non-biblical beliefs is when a person is deeply committed to the untrue belief that is acceptable to show young children behaviors which can bring them harm. In this case, is it okay to say, “What you find is acceptable for you or your own children is not acceptable for my children. My child will not participate in this activity.” Yes. This is what God expects of us. He expects us to make it known that we believe in His will and we intend to protect our own families.
During the time of Isaiah, similar sinful situations existed. Those around Isaiah who were not of the faith found all kinds of sin and evil and engaged in these with recklessness.
“Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away; for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter. Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. The Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice.” Isaiah 59:14-15.
Unlike those of little faith in the time of Isaiah, let us not turn our backs and allow such godless behaviors to go unnoticed. Let us not displease God by allowing such behaviors to continue with our own children. Let us stand strong and speak for our families and protect our children. Let us kindly make our own opinions heard. Let us chose our words carefully, welcome others, but not quarrel about behaviors. Rather stand firmly on the Rock and speak kind words that express your Christian beliefs.
“As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions.” Romans 14:1
We know we are to be kind to others, even when we disagree with their intentions, behaviors, and beliefs. Our job is not to judge others for their behavior but to speak kindly, demonstrate Christianity by our actions, and protect our own families. Join the movement to pray often for our families and most especially our children. Speak kindly but stand strong in your faith. Stand with God.
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