Today's readings make me ask myself: When should I compromise and when must I not compromise?
In 1 Samuel 3-5), Eli made compromises, failing to discipline his sons. The result was disaster for his family and for God's church.
In Acts 15:13-35, the church is faced with a clash of Gentile and Jewish cultures. In the last verses of yesterday's reading, Paul would allow no compromise: "Now then, why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of Gentiles a yoke that neither we nor our ancestors have been able to bear? 11 No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.”
Yet today, the conclusion seems to be a compromise. "Follow some of the kosher food laws." The truth of salvation by grace alone was not compromised, but Christian love led the Gentiles to choose not to exercise their Christian freedom in a way that would make it difficult for their Jewish brothers and sisters in Christ.
We too face these kinds of questions.
- What must never change because God's truth cannot be compromised?
- What must change because a custom has become a stumbling block to others?
God grant us wisdom and courage to make decisions that will bless God's church in the generations to come.
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