John 13:21-38; 2 Chronicles 19; Psalm 78:38-55
“Have you ever noticed ‘those’ Christians over there? You know the ones I’m looking at. Yea, those Christians. I don’t know about them. They have some beliefs that are really different. They really are crazy, in fact, I wonder if they’re really Christians at all?” I know, crazy to think that Christians would talk about brothers and sisters in Christ that way – but we do.
We argue about versions of the Bible, we fight about the style of music, we debate over minor issues of doctrine and keep ourselves at arm’s length from those other guys; not even willing to admit that they may actually be Christians. In our arrogance, and strong belief that our ways are right, we forget a very important message of Jesus. We aren’t called to be “right.” We are called to love our fellow believers. “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35)
I’ve actually heard people say things like, “Well, if you don’t agree with me on this one issue, we can’t fellowship together.” The sign of a Christian is not that we all agree on everything; the sign of a Christian is that we have learned to love each other in spite of our differences. We need to be able to tell those who claim the name of Christ, “If your sins are the same as mine – we can fellowship together. And if your sins are different from mine – we can fellowship together. All because our love for Jesus draws us together.”
Lord God, I have brothers and sisters in Christ who are wrong about You in different ways than I am wrong about You. Remind me to overlook our differences in light of the great love we share in You. Help me to love those who are wrong, even as You help them to love me.