Having finished our unit on “Evil and Hell“, we will turn our attention to addressing the practical question of “Putting It into Practice”.
We have spent so much time talking about logic, reason, worldviews, Biblical Archaeology, Evil and Hell that we have to address how we live in light of all of this information.
All of these lessons are not intended for you to go out and “win arguments and debates”. They are designed to help you live out your faith in a real and authentic way. So how do we do that?
The first component is to love.
Not the superficial, universalist idea of love that says everything is good and permissible, but the authentic, unconditional love that says we will love others regardless of whether we agree or disagree on a given topic.
This is what love is really about. It is what “being a neighbor” is all about. Showing compassion and empathy toward people in need regardless of whether you agree with them, look like them, believe like them, act like them, or even like them.
You know it is super easy to love people who are just like us. It is a lot harder to love people when they are different from us. It is even harder to love people and to be totally committed to their betterment especially when circumstances make it difficult (the idea of telling the truth in love – confronting an issue you know to be wrong but having grace and tact while doing so).
We have to be intentional. A few weeks ago I preached in our church and one of my points was about establishing unity in the Church by “doing something you love to do with someone who does not look like you.” I got the idea from a radio show I listen to frequently.
The bigger idea is to share common interests with different people and you will see walls and barriers break down. This doesn’t mean they will fall immediately. But where there is common purpose and common interest you can find the beginnings of love. Real love. Be intentional about doing this.
Finally, love as Christ loved us. The grace we were shown and given by Christ is the same grace we should show and give out to others.
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