This Easter, a recent conversation has me wondering – are Christians bullies? If you required me to choose a ‘yes or no’ answer today, then I would choose YES (please, hold your *gasp*).
I am not saying that Christians are “bad” people, just that we are judgmental at times (guilty!!). Don’t believe me? Does this sound like love and acceptance?
“JESUS HATES GAYS!!” – yelled through a megaphone, in the face of an 8 year old girl, walking in a pride parade
“You’re going to hell” – spoken to a 30 something woman, in a grocery store, because she had a six-pack in her cart
“You never know when you will die – it could be TODAY!! Repent of your sins, and give your life to Christ” – spoken to a group of teary-eyed 8 year olds, in Sunday School
While the messages were intended to be informational, they came across as BULLYING.
If you were one of the “victims” above, would you want to sit down over coffee with your attacker? Would you want to hear their point of view? If I had to guess, I’m going with an emphatic NO.
I believe that Rick Warren said it best:
“Our culture has accepted two huge lies. The first is that if you disagree with someone’s lifestyle, you must fear or hate them. The second is that to love someone means you agree with everything they believe or do. Both are nonsense. You don’t have to compromise convictions to be compassionate.”
Which begs the question – why do we feel we are better than the “common sinner”? The way I see it, we are all sinners, and your sin is no greater than mine (which are many, daily).
▪️James 2:10 – “For whoever keeps the whole law, and yet stumbles at just one point, is guilty of breaking it all.”
So – I am on the same playing field as every other “common sinner”, now what? Well, here comes the good part (the part that I actually tie this into Easter).
▪️Romans 5:8 – “But God shows his love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. That is grace, that we do not deserve. That is love and acceptance, that we do not deserve. That is a SACRIFICE, that we do not deserve.
Do me a favor. The next time that you want to judge someone for their sin (REMEMBER, you are a sinner), invite them for coffee. Get to know them. Find something that you have in common (it will be easier than you think). Become a friend. Show them the same grace, love and acceptance that Christ has shown you. Happy Easter ✝️