Hot Topics... Outsider Debates
The natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
The world cannot receive Him, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you do know Him, for He abides with you and will be in you.
What have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church?
Jesus did not criticize the Romans, although they were invaders and warlords, although they were guilty of heinous crimes, although they worshipped gods who were not God.
Because God allowed Caesar and Pilate. Because God has far-sighted purposes. Because they didn't know the Lord of Hosts.
Here's the thing: if Christ is our Example, then we should work to copy what He did--and then consider what He did NOT do. For instance, He did not hate outsiders. Neither did He condemn them for their sins.
'Sin is not charged against anyone's account where there is no law' (Romans 5:13, NIV).
'If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin' (John 15:22, NIV).
In other words, those who don't know Jesus...
1) Will not understand your grounds for debate.
2) Will judge Him poorly by your pushy words.
3) Need to hear Good News, and not their mistakes.
Christ's only condemnatory remarks, the only debates He entered (and won), were among those who claimed to share His faith.
Therefore, here's my personal intention: to discuss hot topics within the church--and not attempt to correct outsiders.
## Hot Topic Series: Outsiders (Part 5)
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Hot Topics series.