Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men. For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. (Titus 3 :1-3 ESV)
“When principles that run against your deepest convictions begin to win the day, then battle is your calling, and peace has become sin; you must, at the price of dearest peace, lay your convictions bare before friend and enemy, with all the fire of your faith.” (1) – Abraham Kyper
As disciples of Jesus we are called to walk in the way of “non-violent resistance.” I’m not talking about issues such as, fighting in a just war, or defending your family during a home invasion from criminals. I’m referring to how we relate to the Church, and surrounding culture, as non-violent people of peace who are called to be change agents in the earth. Walking in “the Jesus way” is to make peace as much as we possibly can. We are to seek unity, racial reconciliation in the Church, and to be ambassadors of peace, and justice in society. In short we bring the gospel of the Kingdom into the world.
The Church must be careful to follow the tactics of Jesus, and not Satan’s. Christians can easily be influenced by the powers of darkness, if we’re not operating in love, and discernment. We can easily fall into that trap of carnal, or worldly techniques to bring about political change, and racial reconciliation. When we do this, we are being influenced by evil powers, as opposed to the power of God. To walk out the Kingdom of God in our culture, we must develop new, “habits of the heart: patience, humility , honesty and recollection.”(2) Satan’s way is to bring change through strong armed, and hate filled rhetoric, and actions. He is the master of division, Jesus is the Prince of Peace.
There is no place for racism or division in the Kingdom of God. All ethnic groups are one in Christ, we all have this in common, for he is the cornerstone of our faith. Nor is there a place for political infighting. We are called as those who have been redeemed by Christ, and reconciled to God, to be ministers of reconciliation in the Church, and in all spheres of society. Truth is found in Christ, and we must never compromise it for the sake of false peace. Jesus’ words (truth) are divisive and his claims of divinity are exclusive. Followers of Jesus must never, “keep the peace at the cost of truth.”(3) Jesus was the most compassionate man on earth, and he spoke the truth in love. The truth is divisive enough without our trying to force it on others in our own strength. When we speak the truth, and live the truth, the Holy Spirit will bear witness to those whose hearts are open. To others we will be seen as hateful.
Source: All quotes above are from, The Way Of The Dragon Or The Way Of The Lamb, by Jamin Goggin and Kyle Strobel. I would encourage everyone to buy and read this excellent book.
- Abraham Kyper, Page 208.
- Page 206.
- Page 208