“Your skirt length is a heart problem.”
“Music with a 2-4 beat is demonic.”
“Christians should never step foot in a movie theater.”
Maybe you remember hearing things like this in your church.
Some young Christians, when they look back on their upbringing, only remember a Christianity of “dos and donts.” They only remember their pastors preaching against rock music, clothing standards and movie theaters and the guilt they felt when they violated these commands. And the first chance they get, they flee.
What is your spiritual gift?
If you have asked yourself this question, there’s a chance you might have tried out one of those online spiritual gift tests. Typically rating yourself on a scale of 1-5, you measure yourself against statements like, “I seek to inspire others who are facing difficulties,” “other people tend to follow me,” and “I have a burden for the lost.” But how accurate are these tests?
At one time or another, every one of us has been the recipient of bad counsel from a fellow Christian. It can be a tough thing to swallow advice tainted with inaccuracies, hurtful words, or false assumptions. We all know what our default response is to such counsel. We might get angry at their intrusiveness, be discouraged by their hurtful tone, or even be judgmental toward their judgmentalism. But is there a way to receive bad counsel in a such a way that is beneficial, not only for you, but also for your fellow Christian?
By ‘bad counsel,’ I am not referring to false teaching or heretical counsel which rejects Jesus Christ and his Word. This counsel must be utterly rejected. I’m referring to counsel delivered by a Christian brother or sister that might come across as judgmental, hypocritical, ‘legalistic,’ or insensitive. I understand that there is a time and place to lovingly confront such counsel, but how can we actually benefit from it? Here are four ways that you can make the most of a less-than-ideal counseling situation.
Elias Keach was a 17th century pastor’s kid - the son of the respected Baptist minister, Benjamin Keach. Benjamin Keach was known for introducing hymn singing in Baptist churches, writing a catechism, and preceding the pastoral ministry of Charles Spurgeon. But Elias didn’t adopt his parents’ religion. Forsaking their beliefs, he left London to go to the American Colonies in 1689. In this new environment, he became known as the son of the famous Benjamin Keach, which brought him great admiration and respect. Taking advantage of this, Elias would wear clergy outfits, posing as a man of God. Although he played the part well, his heart was far from God.
Social Media is a never-ending conversation. People from all around the globe connect via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest (the list goes on) to share ideas, argue for positions, document daily life, or just share relevant memes and GIFs on every single post they can find.
Sadly, even for Christians, social media is typically a nasty place. It’s as if Christians have decided that Scriptural principles of communication don’t extend to the internet. They’ll be friendly to their next door neighbor, but spew hateful, hurtful words online.
Does your online testimony line up with Scripture? Here are 10 Proverbs that should guide our use of social media:
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