I'm a woman of strong opinions. Just ask my husband. Yet, I've felt restrained from jumping into the fray of the current political climate, the upcoming election, and the current hot topics that have everyone on Facebook fired up. Sure, I've got an opinion about most all of it, but the truth is, my opinion doesn't matter. There's only one opinion that matters and that's God's. The one thing I will tell you my opinion about is this. Those of us who claim to be Jesus followers need to make sure we really know what His opinion is, (and have the Biblical exegesis to back it up- God's truth, as well as a heart that is motivated by God's love instead of prideful arrogance-God's grace), before we go spouting off about our opinions.
It's all too easy for our own opinions, our own way of thinking, our own understanding to get slightly out of alignment with God's. As you can see from the illustration above, when we keep walking down the pathway of that slight separation between our ways and God's ways, the distance between the two gets greater and greater.
The thing is, from the beginning satan's strategy was to whisper into the ear of man, "Has God really said...." and the enemy is using that same strategy today. "Has God really said this or that is a sin?" is one he whispers to all of us. Just fill in the blank with whatever it is you or I struggle with, or with one of those hot topic issues being debated on Facebook. If God has said in His Word that it is a sin and we allow the voice of the enemy or the culture to get us to veer away from that, we've taken that first small step out of alignment with God's ways.
Another enemy strategy that's as old as time, is a sense of distrust of and dissatisfaction with God's leadership. It happened in the garden with Adam and Eve. They believed the lie that God was withholding something good and beneficial from them. It happened in the eighth chapter of first Samuel. The children of Israel came to the prophet Samuel and told them they wanted a king just like the other nations. What a slap in the face of God that was, for He had been the only King over them up to that point. So, they got a human king, and more times than not, those human kings led them further and further away from God's ways. The thing is, when we are fully trusting in and following the leadership of God, we're not going to fit in with "the other nations", we're not going to fit in with the way culture thinks things should be. In more than one place in the Bible God calls His people peculiar. The definition in the original language doesn't really mean odd as we would define the word peculiar. Rather, it denotes possession, we are God's chosen people, we belong to Him, bought with the price of the shed blood of His Son. As His people, we are to honor and glorify Him. Instead, our desire to be loved, admired and accepted by others too often overrides our desire to honor God. We all struggle with this. If we didn't, when God's Word contradicts a current cultural mindset, we wouldn't be so fearful to stay in alignment with God's Word and ways no matter what it costs us.
The truth of the matter is, we can't change others. Arguing, reasoning, and Facebook debating won't change anyone. You can't make anyone else but yourself get in alignment with God's ways. First, you and I have to decide that He means what He says and He says what He means. We've got to quit listening to the voice of the enemy and the voice of culture whispering, "Did God really say...." inferring that He doesn't really mean what He says. Then, we've got to decide that we're going to follow His Word and His ways and that we're going to live to give Him honor and glory, even if it means less acceptance for us in this world. I'm not going to candy coat this. It's hard. It's scary. But, God's opinion is what counts. It means more than mine. It means more than yours. Now, let's crack open our Bibles and make sure we know what His is, and then, let's do it.