If Satan can’t push us into unbelief, blatant rebellion , or complacency, he’ll push us into harshness. He might prefer theological liberalism, feminism, immorality, and dishonesty, or to see us complacently drifting along, doing nothing for the Lord.
But if he can’t get that, because we are too zealous, too committed, too firm in belief, he’ll tempt us to be proud of our rightness and zeal. The result, invariably, is to twist us into messengers of a harsh and compassionless Gospel which is no Gospel at all, and can even lead to cruelty and oppression, all in the name of “being right.”
Either way will do for Satan. Anything to get us away from truly honouring our Lord, anything to keep us from giving out a true Gospel message of purity, truth, compassion, and mercy.
Fred Phelps just died, so some may think of him. But probably every one of us tends towards either unbelief / weakness or pride / harshness. Satan will find your buttons and push them. You don’t have to be like Fred Phelps to pervert your message and your life.
May the Lord keep us true and tender.
For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
Edit: Had forgotten this related post: No Love Without Truth
Excellent post: I know I have fallen into these categories on occasion. That even balance we must have is one we must fight to keep with consistency, I think we often forget the battle we are in. WE also forget where our strength comes from, and the need to remain humble and loving on a minute by minute basis.
Thank you Jon for this, it is so very much needed in our day. I am going to post this as well…
Thanks, Lyn. Blessings to you.
Reblogged this on Christians Are Us and commented:
Short and sweet but all so true. Satan can and will do everything in his power to weaken our testimonies. Please keep your eyes on the skies and your feet on the ground, but in all things remember to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Thank you, Mark. I’ve just edited it to add a link to a short post from two years ago with some related thoughts.
Truth and Mercy – Reacting with truth without mercy results in harshness, reacting with mercy without truth is mere sentiment. How we need to ask God for the right balance. Thanks, Jon.
Thanks, Mom. “Mere sentiment” — a good way to put it.
Thank you, Jon, for these thoughts and truths. It is so easy to get distracted, especially be being misunderstood by a fellow-believer. Forgiveness and tenderness are certainly key; rooting out any root of bitterness; getting on our knees and into God’s Word. Thank you again, for this writing and reminder.
Thanks, Cyndy. So easy to deviate, one way or another, from the straight path.