The Cross is Empty!

March 31, 2013

in Links to good stuff, None of the Above

While I don’t scream Jesus in every post I do here, my faith is a constant thread in what I write. This isn’t because I work at it, or I think am supposed to do it; my faith is a deep part of who I am and I couldn’t hide it if I tried.

03-31-2013

My faith is also a huge part of my marriage. The Bible has helped be a far better husband than I could have been on my own. What’s more, understanding He died for me when I am so imperfect makes it so much easier for me to love my imperfect wife.

However, I don’t want to give a sermon or an altar call today. I want to offer an apology to those who don’t follow Jesus. I want to apologise for the way those who claim to follow Jesus have treated you. I want to apologise for the name-calling, the anger (which is a cover for fear), and the ignorance. Unfortunately, many who call themselves Christians don’t understand how Jesus commanded us to relate to the world. Jesus never condemned, put-down, or tried to change those who did not follow God. Jesus reserved His chastising, correction, and wrath for those who claimed to be following God – primarily for the leaders who were leading wrongly. To those who did not know God, Jesus showed love, compassion, and kindness. He wanted them to experience the love of God.

Many who follow Jesus mistakenly think they were called to fix the world by making laws and forcing people to “do what is right”. While their desire may be good, they are acting outside of what the Bible says, and they have abandoned love for laws. “Love the sinner, hate the sin” sounds nice, but it’s not in the Bible and most who say it aren’t doing it. Please, forgive us for this; it’s not how our Lord taught us to treat you.

If you follow Jesus, please consider that much of what we do in His name has nothing to do with what He did or what He told us to do. Much of what we do drives people away from Him rather than drawing them in. I pray we will all see where we have failed so we might become better witnesses of His love and glory.

He is risen, He is risen indeed.

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Great tweet of the week:

Stop score-keeping! It’s radical. It’s hard. But truthfully it’s the way we R called to live & love @marriagejourney

Links to blog posts that stood out to me this last week:

The Generous Wife

Quadruple Word Score ◄ Let anyone think we are perfect (and for the record I was being a bit selfish because I was feeling entitled.)
A Bit of Help ◄ What can you do to make life easier?
Say Yes ◄ How do you feel when you are told no?
The Quick Anger of Inconvenience ◄ Don’t put it on your spouse!


Hot, Holy and Humorous

Fun Findings about Sex ◄ This is a fun post.
Volunteer for Marital Intimacy Research Today ◄ I am so all over this one!


Journey to Surrender

True Love Gives Without Condition ◄ We can never prefect this, but we must try none-the-less.


Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage

The Divorce Myth Part 2 ◄ No marriage is easy!


One Flesh Marriage

Speak No – Evil ◄ Are you withholding from your wife? Sex is not the only thing withheld in marriages.


Redeeming Marriages with Jack and Janet

Redeeming Marriages ◄ God’s love can bring redemption to your marriage.


The Romantic Vineyard

7 Things We Don’t Do To Hurt Our Marriage ◄ This is a great count-point to all the what we do in our marriage posts!


…to Love Honor and Vacuum

Don’t Be in the Dark About Your Family’s Finances ◄ Could your wife take care of the finances is something happened to you? If not, fix that ASAP!

8 comments
Joshua Belyeu
Joshua Belyeu

Its definitely not easy for us to walk the line between justice and grace, especially when witnessing to others...but it still must be done. Unfortunately, many so-called "believers" use despicable tactics and messages, like the Westboro Baptists. Such people are NOT true followers of Christ, and one of the main reasons so many believe them are because we who truly practice love haven't been taking enough of a public stand. We need to ditch the false "superiority" mantra, and show people we're just as fallible as them. No one measures up to God's standards on their own, not even the most faithful Christians. Jesus alone paid our price; we can't earn it.

celestesipad
celestesipad

Great post! Yes, I'm not fond of the term "Christian" either. The term was developed by people who were not christians...calling those who followed Christ "Christians" just like computer nerds are referred to as "geeks" by those not as computer savvy. The term "Christian" is used way too broadly. I'd much rather true followers of Christ be referred to as disciples, but I don't feel worthy of that title! 

Oysterbed7
Oysterbed7

Amen!  I stand in agreement and conviction.  It's the end it's the lives that we touch, not the sins that we corrected.

TheGenerousHusband
TheGenerousHusband moderator

@Joshua Belyeu I agree fully on showing who we are, warts and all.

As to those who claim to follow Jesus who teach things contrary to the truth of Christ, I think we have an obligation to say "they are not part of us". Some will complain this is divisive or judgemental, but if they are making Jesus look bad we MUST correct that and we can only do so by pointing out that they are in error. (I'm not talking about minor differences, but rather things clearly contrary to what Jesus said and did.)

Joshua Belyeu
Joshua Belyeu

@celestesipad I usually use the term "Christian" in a general sense, because I don't play into the church politics game.

themarriagebed
themarriagebed

@cookspencer On behalf of those who "follow Jesus" who do and say things Jesus never did or said or want us to do or say.

Joshua Belyeu
Joshua Belyeu

@TheGenerousHusband Oh, absolutely...but we can't allow ourselves to start acting like the purity we're referencing is our own. All of us have broken the Ten Commandments, in spirit if not action.

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