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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Compromise

We all crave significance.  We all want to be accepted and to feel like we are making an impact.  That is a general truth that is especially true for the male of the species.  There have been times that I have been placed in situations or asked questions that I knew if I reacted or answered consistent with my understanding of the Bible, I would offend or at least damage the relationships involved.  The pressure, both internal and external, in those situations, was intense.  The internal arguments went something like this, “If I say what I really think, I will lose any opportunity to have an impact in this situation, so you better agree.  On the other hand if I agree I lose my integrity.  What shall I do?”  I would like to say that in all of those situations I chose the path of integrity.  That would not be the case.  Sometimes I simply chose not to respond, and in some situations that was appropriate.  Other times I chose to compromise my understanding of the Word to gain acceptance.
We cannot compromise our understanding of God's Word for the sake of the favor of men.
The problem is that choice is completely counter to the Word of God.  In Galatians 1:10 Paul tells us that to please men is to cease to be a bond servant of Christ.  The only “encouragement” in that passage is the reality that even Peter struggled with this.  Gives me some level of comfort (misery still loves company).

We are called to live a life following hard after God.  That means that we are continually measuring our behavior and attitudes against the Word of God through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.  We have to listen to Him.  Not doing so is quenching His ministry in our lives.  Not standing firm on what we understand to be the clear teaching of the Word of God in order to gain favor with men, is at best dishonest – no that is wrong, James 4:17 says that it is sin.

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