Friday, March 16, 2012


1 Corinthians 7:25

...I have no command from the Lord, but I give my judgment as one who by the Lord's mercy is trustworthy.

There are choices in this life on which we have no chapter and verse on which to lean for the use of guiding our decisions.

In these we can search for Biblical principles by which we can find firm, consistent wisdom in which to provide peace and grace to our decisions.

These areas are called, "adiaphora." These are open-hand discussions. By that I mean that there are conversely closed-hand discussions on which the Church is strictly defined.

An example of a close-handed topic is the deity of Jesus. He is God. If you do not believe this, you are not a Christian. You can call yourself a "Christian," but you are not in essence truly one.

An example of an open-handed topic is whether or not to use guitars or organs in the accompanying of songs at church. It may be only preference. You can choose not to dance if you like, but you may dance if you like as well. Same with playing cards, smoking a cigar, using large screens at church, or women wearing pants in public. All up for discussion and subject to preference, but none of these determine or divide Christians and non-Christians.

HOWEVER - the apostle Paul still answered the Corinthians' questions. He pointed out that it was not a command of Jesus, but he did - as an apostle in Christ - relay his wisdom and ideas concerning the subject matters presented to him.

There are good reasons to think about and develope convictions regarding open-handed issues. They ought not become stumbling blocks or dividing fences for Christians however.

Be careful not to insist too deeply on your well-developed opinion on a matter of Christian freedom in which there is no direct command from God recorded in the Bible. Also be careful not to take too lightly matters of Christians freedom so that if you are asked for advice you have no thought or conviction on which to assist your brother/sister in Christ.

The trick is caring enough to mull it over, but not so much as to after having done so to believe it to be doctrine.

Being a Christian does not mean not having opinions. Being a Christians means knowing the difference between opinion and Gospel and fighting for the one in light of doctrinal purity and letting the other go in light of Spiritual unity.

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