Published March 8, 2016

Shelia Shares
"Christian vs. Christian"

Recently someone posted a question on Facebook. (I simply repeat the thought since I don't understand the "why" of this either.)

Why do some Christians condemn someone else for strongly expressing their Christian faith? If someone stands up for Jesus without compromise, why criticize or tear them down? If someone doesn't back down in the midst of an opposing opinion, isn't that what we in the church call witnessing? Shouldn't we be supportive of those who speak out for Jesus?

Of course, if we go to the Scriptures, we find that Jesus had the same problem with His disciples. The disciples attempted to make someone who wasn't part of their "church" quit talking and working for God. The story is so important that it is reported in two of the Gospels:

"Now John answered and said, ‘Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us. But Jesus said to him, ‘Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is on our side.'" (Luke 9: 49-50).

"Now John answered Him, saying, ‘Teacher, we saw someone who does not follow us casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow us.' But Jesus said, ‘Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me. For he who is not against us is on our side.'" (Mark 9: 38-40).

Jesus basically told the disciples to support those who were preaching the truth. They didn't really know the man they opposed. In fact, he was working miracles in Jesus' name. He just wasn't one of them (one of their particular group).

I wonder what Jesus would say today about the criticism of someone who outright preaches Jesus. Would He tell us to cut him down because he isn't from our church? Or would He say, "For he that is not against us is for us?"

- Shelia

Comments on this? shelia@thegospelgreats.com.

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