Thursday, January 29, 2009

Why we do what we do

This post is the culmination of a great deal of discussion and meditation. I'm not sure that I have it still completely put into words yet but I've definitely finally thought of a way to put down something I've been meaning to blog about. As our preferences and convictions have developed over the years there was always something that I couldn't put my finger on that seemed to separate things into two categories. Today it kind of sort of clicked.

As I've made decisions about what things I participate in and what things I don't there was always a struggle. What would God think of this? How does this fit? The Bible doesn't really address this or that issue. How do I know what He wants me to do? Some people say that a certain activity is wrong and some think it is okay. Why the difference between one Christian to the next? Obviously we all have to hear from God about what He wants us to do but something that has helped me to better understand it is that there are essentially two different kinds of activities I should not participate in. One kind of thing would be the things God clearly spells out in the Bible--thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, you know the drill. The second type is the one that usually causes all the division however--things that we abstain from because of the appearance of evil.

What kinds of things appear evil can change through the years. Something considered wrong in Bible times won't necessarily be considered wrong today and vice versa. Here is the key--to focus on the principle, not the application of it. Don't get so wrapped up in specific applications of things that you forget the point of it. For example, modesty can not be defined. You can't give someone exact guidelines on exactly how their clothes should fit and know that will always make them modest. Some of modesty is attitude and how you wear your clothes. If you have completely modest clothing but act like the woman Proverbs warns us about, you are not modest. Something that made even more sense to me was when Dr. Innes who we heard speak at The Wilds used the example of playing pool. Years ago pool was seen as something associated with drinking and worldly behavior. Now it does not have the same connotations and we can play pool without those same appearances of evil. It is all about the principle not the application of it.


Forrest said...

Megan, through the years one of the most important things I've learned is that I simply CANNOT be your Holy Spirit. I say if the Holy Spirit, through the teaching or preaching of the written WORD OF GOD, specifically tells me something has the appearance of evil, then by all means I should abstain from it.

I've also learned that I cannot impose or force my personal convictions on others, even if my convictions are 100% right and are supported by scripture.

As our Pastor has often said, "You cannot be someones Holy Spirit." He has also said, "Others may, I cannot." I like that.

I say let God be God and follow Jesus. AMEN!