Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29th – Proverbs 29: A Mutual Agreement

The righteous detest the dishonest; the wicked detest the upright.” – Proverbs 29:27

Let’s be honest. We are to love ALL God’s children, good and bad. Why? Because Jesus loves them, that’s why! We can’t hate anyone! To hate your brother PROVES that you aren’t walking in the light (I John 2:9). Jesus loved us and died for us while we were still sinners and we must do the same:

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – Romans 5:8

But yet, there is this little gem in the book of Proverbs that tells us a secret; the righteous detest the wicked and the wicked detest the righteous. It’s an agreement of sorts. We who live righteously can’t stand the lack of basic decency and morality the wicked display as a lifestyle and the wicked can’t stand the display of decency and morality that the righteous display.  We don’t need to fool ourselves. If we are truly righteous we have NOTHING in common with the wicked.

Several years ago I went out preaching in a tough neighborhood with a newcomer to our church. This guy was LILY WHITE. I’m talking pressed khakis, a tucked in IZOD shirt with a shiny leather belt topped off with perfectly white Adidas and KNEE HIGH tube socks! Wow! He looked white, spoke white and talked white perfectly enunciating every syllable. Now, I have nothing wrong with that, this is who this guy was. But when we got into the neighborhood, we encountered a couple of really rough guys. It turns out that they were drugs dealers and one of the dudes made no attempt to hide a very obvious bulge of a gun in his waistline.

So my VERY white "friend" walks up to these guys starts throwing some slang, “Hey man, how’s it hanging, BRO?” I looked at him in total horror. We were going to get stabbed, I just knew it. He went on, “So yeah man, we’re just hanging here in Da Hood and we wanted to shout at ya, WORD!” The guys recoiled with a look of disgust; they were getting angry. I elbowed my idiot friend to shut up and began talking to them, LIKE A NORMAL PERSON. I didn’t try to relate to them in the natural, what do I have in common with a thug from the hood? So I began to appeal to them on the only common ground we do have; we have ALL been sinners and fallen short of the glory of God at one time.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” Romans 3:23

They heard me out because I was talking to them honestly from the heart. But real life, they DETEST the fact that I live right and probably see me as a goody two shoes. I in turn LOATHE their mistreatment of women, lack of responsibility to their kids and the immoral way they earn a buck. But I made a mark that day. Perhaps one day they can come into the light and we can have some real fellowship, but if not, we’ll just continue our little dance of detesting one another’s lifestyle. At least the battle lines in my life are drawn clear, there is NO GRAY AREA.

Stop trying to be relevant to the devil; just stay relevant to the Gospel.

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