We realize this is going to be a surprisingly heavy post for one of our first blogs, especially a first one talking about our faith. Unfortunately, this topic came up recently, and it weighed heavy on me. In Christianity, we have so much freedom in our relationship with Christ, but at the same time, our humanity and Satan can cause us to make choices that affect the opportunity of freedom in Christ for others. This is basically about some painful, and real hypocrisy we unfortunately see in Christianity, and how our actions can lead others to stumble.
There are many philosophical and ideological issues that keep people from believing in Jesus Christ, but there are also the actions of us as humans, totally outside of anything in the Bible, that cause people to be adamantly opposed to believing in Jesus. Unfortunately, there are hurt people in the church because of the actions of others that claim to be Christian.
Stories come out all the time of people in the church having sexual relations with and molesting innocent children. Though we know that every sin is a sin in the eyes of God, there will be a day of judgement, and a day where we must face the decisions we made on this earth (Revelation 20:11-15). We also know that there can be redemption after your sin, if you truly ask the Lord for forgiveness and repent (Romans 5:1).
However, there are some things that are likely to be seen as so hypocritical in the eyes of the world, that it causes the unbeliever and the believer sometimes too, to think that God allows these circumstances to happen, and how could a just God do that. This leaves people utterly damaged, many times completely changing the trajectory of their lives.
One of the verses that always gets me is Mark 9:42, “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.” This is so impactful to me, and I understand this to mean that Jesus absolutely detests when someone does something that causes a hurt or loss of relationship with Him. We must do our best to live by the principles and teachings of Jesus Christ. Sure, we may not be able to change anyone’s heart fully; that’s purely the work of the Holy Spirit, but we can plant mustard seeds of change, and we can absolutely strive to live in a way that is welcoming to the believer and the unbeliever alike. To live in a way that is righteous for the Lord. We must live as fishers of men (Matthew 4:19), to bring news to the poor, to proclaim freedom to the captive and bind up the brokenhearted (Isaiah 61:1).
Instead of following our sinful flesh and making selfish choices that push others away from a relationship with God, let’s live every day striving to proclaim the good news and freedom that awaits those who choose to follow Jesus.