God says "Love they neighbor as thyself"-Mark 12:31 (NIV) A call to love the others in the world, not only to love them but to love them as you love yourself. You will notice that there is no discrimination in this bible verse. There is no exception and there is no exclusion, a simple order; to love thy neighbor, yet we see day in and day out many people who claim Christianity as their religion demonizing their neighbors.
This religious group of judgers do nothing but harm the Christian religion. Secular society looks down upon Christians not because they believe in God, but because they do not love, they do not promote peace, they do not treat everyone equally as the bible calls them to. Instead, they turn their backs on those that do not share their beliefs.
Rather than sharing their beliefs with others and embracing those lost souls as a means of bringing them back to God, the lost ones are left lost and out to pasture. I know this personally. My husband and I were whole-heartedly servers of Jesus Christ when we met. We were Christians, we had a wonderful group of Christian friends we met with on a weekly basis, we attended church, essentially we went through the motions which portrayed our belief, but more than that we actually believed. That is, until we decided to move in together before we were married... In our hearts we were already married. In front of and to God we promised ourselves to one another, isn't that what the bible says is needed for two to become wed? The promise before God to be together for the rest of our lives? We did that, before we moved in together, however that was not enough for our friends. Instead of standing beside us and loving us despite what they called a sin, they turned their backs on us and we were shunned. (We are still for the most part shunned from this group of Christians, for making one decision that went against what they believed.) At that time, we agreed that we were making the best decision for us, we didn't realize that our group of Christian friends felt they would be impacted as well.
I have many more examples that have occurred to me personally, attacks from so-called Christians, judgments made against me and my family, etc. but I will spare you that read.
So, Christians are called to love, not to judge, to spread the Gospel, and to reach out to those in need; yet where is this occurring? In my neck of the woods (Iowa) it is a sin to step foot in a bar--not illegal, a sin-- and if caught doing so you will be frowned upon...yet that is where God's love is needed most, right?
When you see someone straying off the path that is called righteousness why not stand beside that person in love, rather than cutting all ties with them? How is shunning going to help that person that is considered lost?
These so-called believers give Christianity a terrible name. Instead of spreading the love of Jesus, they spread gossip, judgments, and hatred. I have known many more people who claim to believe in God, yet do not attend church because they do not believe that attending church is necessary in order to have a relationship with God who show more love to others in the secular world and who help others get on the right track, than I do those that do attend church and religious functions. Something is terribly wrong with this situation!
A light needs to be shed on this epidemic. Church and church-goers should be known as the kind people, the people waiting with open arms, the welcoming people, the people you can call when you need help or you need a shoulder to cry on...they should not be the group that people fear, nor should they be one of the most selective religious groups, they should not be passing judgment; instead they should be setting an example and loving each and every person despite their differences. This includes homosexuals, sinners, secular people, alcoholics, drug addicts, EVERY GROUP of people, not just the ones that adhere to their beliefs.
I can attest to the fact that there are not many people who are willing to put themselves in a position to be openly ridiculed, judged, and shunned...yet that is what happens more often than not when an individual interacts with a Christian.
If you are not this type of Christian, if you do in fact show love to EVERYONE and you do not pass judgment I commend you. You are the true picture of Christianity, however there are not many who can say this.
"Let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!" - John 8:7
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