Proverbs 18:2 says, “A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.”
Christians definitely fail at this.
In fact, we’ve become pretty good at expressing our opinions. But when it comes to understanding others, different cultures, and worldviews, we’ve failed miserably.
Our failure to understand includes a failure to sympathize, too.
We’ve failed at relating to others.
We can’t fathom why someone would be pro-choice. We can’t fathom why someone would loath the idea of a church community. We can’t even fathom how fellow Christians can hold themselves to different standards of modesty than us.
Actually, we can fathom why. But it’s according to our own narrative of the world and for our own benefit. We explain “why” in malicious, insulting, and degenerate terms.
Like the fool in Proverbs 18:2, we take no pleasure in understanding the issues or the people we encounter on a daily basis. Millennials, racial strife, and the “US was never a Christian nation” crowd are just a few of the many groups and issues we’ve failed to comprehend, much less appropriately address.
The worse part of our lack of understanding is the result of it: anger and strife.
Proverbs 19:11 makes this clear: “Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.”
We can’t have good sense when we lack understanding. And when both are absent, we become easily triggered by the multitude of uncomfortable and different worldviews.
It’s no surprise then that many Christians start to separate from culture, creating their own exclusive, cynical enclaves that rely more on tribalism than God’s love and grace.
When we fail to understand the secular world, we become detached. Eventually becoming unable to fulfill one of our principle missions; spreading the gospel to all.
Why can’t we put away our self-righteousness, and yes, even our piousness for the sake of realizing why a non-Christian would take this or that belief over the gospel? Are we too focused on our perceived persecution, or our culture wars to see the genuineness of disbelief in our fellow humans?
The existence of disbelief is a sad fact of our sinful world. The existence of an unsympathetic cold-hearted Christian is an injustice to the Gospel.The existence of an unsympathetic cold-hearted Christian is an injustice to the Gospel.Click To Tweet