Saturday, January 4, 2014


I have heard and read a lot of opinions lately. I have even expressed a few of my own. Everybody has their own idea of what is right and what is wrong. Including me! With all the differing opinions out there, how can we ALL be right? We can't! So how do we know what is truly right and wrong? Where do we go to find the truth? And, once we find it, how do we know it really IS the truth? Because we FEEL it's right?

Do you trust what your doctor says? They've been to school, a LOT of school. They are well-educated and know a lot about the human body but actually there are actually many things they don't know. Do they know how to change the oil in their Mercedes?

Every time you go to the doctor with something wrong, they offer their "opinion" about what it is that's ailing you. Why else would you be advised to get a "second opinion" if your doctor didn't first offer you HIS opinion?

Oh, doctors can be pretty good with the obvious stuff, like the guy who went to his doctor complaining of a headache. They x-rayed his skull and found a 3 1/2" nail in his brain. "Umm, we have determined that you have a foreign object lodged between your frontal lobe and your cerebral cortex." In layman's terms, Dude, you've got a nail in your head!! But the doctors couldn't say that confidently without evidence - without the x-ray.
A friend of mine where I work has a very sick father. He has lots of heart issues. He was scheduled to have a couple of stints placed in his chest this past week but the week before that, while his doctor was on vacation, my friend's father had some major chest pains. He was taken to the ER where the physician on duty prescribed immediate bypass surgery. My friend's family insisted they not proceed until their regular doctor was contacted. Good thing too. The bypass surgery would likely have killed my friend's father. He now has his stints and is dong much better, despite the ER doctor's "opinion."

So, if even the smartest guys on the planet can't be 100% sure about their diagnoses, where can we go to find the absolute truth - some where we KNOW is right? Well, I'd suggest we ask God. If HE doesn't know, and He's seen it all, who else would?

We who call ourselves Christians are theoretically flowers of Christ, hence our name. What then are we to do when Jesus tells us that HE is the truth (John 14:6)? What do we do with that? Do we simply ignore it? Or do we do what ever Jesus tells us to do? Hmm. I often struggle with that.

Jesus tells us in John 14:15 that if we love Him we will keep His commandments. Okay. Then Jesus tells us in Matthew 28:19 to "go and make disciples." So, have I gone? I am very desirous of making disciples but have I actually gone out an made any? Mmm, maybe one? In eight years? Uh . . . yeah. In my opinion, I thank God "his mercies are new every morning."

Let's face it, we are all sinners. We can try really hard not to be but we will always fail. The Law of Moses shows us our sins, our failures. Middle eastern cemeteries are full of people who broke the laws and were punished for their sins. Thank God for His grace!!!

"Grace" is a loving, merciful God who says, "Come on Bob. Get up and try again." However, WE must be the ones who actually get back up and desire to try again. We get back up because we have been extended grace. And grace is the seed of hope. And without the hope that is found in the cross it doesn't matter what anyone's "opinion" is. But with Christ, in Christ, we find our only hope.

Recently I took some heat for aligning myself with Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson when he offered HIS opinion about sexual sin. Apparently, MY opinion didn't agree with theirs. That's fine. As I have already written, we ALL have our opinions. What was surprising to me was that I was condemned. Neither Mr. Robertson nor myself condemned anybody. We offered our opinions about sin. The only evidence supporting our opinions appears in the Bible.

I was told that my writings "attacked someone's religious beliefs." By merely expressing my own? Hmm. We need to find a little consistency before we express our opinions . . . in my opinion.

Before I close I'd like to tell you about a young man from my church. He took me aside one night at youth group and told me that he was gay. My reply was, "Alright." He had a puzzled look on his face and said, "Really? I thought you'd be more upset than that. I heard you were a homophobe."

"Where did you hear that?" I replied. "I FEAR no one. Look, homosexuality is a sin. But I am a sinner too. We're ALL sinners. Welcome to the club. Your telling me you are openly gay changes nothing. I still love you."

At that point my young friend gave me a hug so hard I heard, and felt, my back crack.

You will never see me in any picket line telling some LGBT group that they are going to hell. Why? Because that would be the height of hypocrisy. Would I ever expect to see someone picketing outside my house because I once stole something, uttered God's name in vain or looked at a woman with lustful thoughts? No. It's like I said, and like the BIBLE says in Romans 3:10, we are ALL sinners. There are NONE righteous, not one!"

We need to extend to each other the same grace that God extends to us. We need to come along side one another and help each other be accountable for our actions or inactions and we must love others, and that means everybody, as we love ourselves.

In my opinion.

"36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” - Matthew 22:36-40

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