Issues

The other week I was posting on a sports web site about basketball when the title of a posted topic caught my eye. The post invited debate/discussion about the decision made in South Dakota to ban almost all abortion procedures. As I read the discussion that followed, I was suprised and rather annoyed at all of the personal attacks that these people were hurling at each other from both sides of the issue. Those who favored abortion - or rather called themselves pro-choice - attacked "conservatives" for their support of South Dakota's governor while those who called themselves pro-life attacked the "liberals" who favored abortion as a woman's right.

Issues like this can easily divide us right down the middle. Should we take a stand on moral issues? Absolutely! But my fear is that, if you are a Christian, then you may be noted more for arguing a point rather than pointing people to Jesus.

Where does Jesus stand on the issues at hand? If you carefully read the gospels in the New Testament you will see that Jesus, while not ignoring sin or moral issues, focused on people and their spiritual and physical needs first. When it came to pointing out issues, Jesus almost always focused His attention first on how His followers were behaving, not on the actions of those who didn't follow Him. His Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament book of Matthew chapters 5-7 are directed at His followers and deals with such topics as how they should help their neighbors and guard the conditions of their hearts.

My point is this: If I as a believer and follower of Christ spent more time focusing on people and loving them to Jesus, then the issues that can take up so much of my time will take a backseat to what is more important. I believe in the transforming power of the Holy Spirit and His ability to change the hearts of men and women. So while I will always take a stand on the issues, I must first seek to meet the spiritual and physical needs of those around me. After all, a single teenage mom or a homeless man could really care less about my views on abortion. Rather, they need to see Jesus and His compassion lived through me.

4 comments:

gabe said...

and sometimes when an issue comes it, its hard to show compassion, its a lot easier to jump on one side and hurl the insults.

Anonymous said...

Remember the woman with the issue of blood? Jesus healed her.

Sterling Griggs said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sterling Griggs said...

Ahh, an "issue" of blood. That's a good one. I had to read it a couple of times to figure it out.

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