Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NIV
I’ve touched on this topic before, briefly, but it’s pressing on me…
So, I recently watched a video from a Christian YouTuber. He felt that God had led him to warn others against listening to a Christian music group, because he had “first-hand” knowledge that an individual in this group was engaging in fornication and getting drunk. I don’t know if any of these allegations are true and frankly, I don’t care.
I guess what affected me the most about the video is that I am very much a sinner. I have shared some of those close to me how once upon a time, engulfed in sin and condemnation, I cannot imagine what I would have felt had I come across a video as such. Because once upon a time, I used to wake up early in the mornings, call and email pastors/churches across the nation seeking/hoping for someone to tell me that yes, God forgives and yes, God will forgive (me).
It took a very long time to hear that. Months after sending an email, a woman named Rhonda Worley emailed back a one sentence reply: God forgives all sins. She didn’t tell me to go find a church. She didn’t condemn me for being such a sinner for the sins I had laid out.
See, I had felt such condemnation at the time that I didn’t even feel I could go to God. I needed someone to tell me, to confirm for me, that God’s forgiveness would reach me too. Me, who knew better. Me, who was born and raised in the church. Me, who was a Bible Quizzer. Me, who had walked with God, at that time for 20 years. Me…
I knew better.
All my life I had heard and lived by: If you know better do better. Some where along the way, myself, and I believe other Christians, allow everything we know about the grace and mercy of God to fall through the cracks. Oh! But His grace…
As Christians, we have a duty and responsibility to one another to strengthen one another, to restore one another. We cannot tear one another down. When our brothers and sisters fall, we must surround them and demonstrate to them the love of Christ that He has demonstrated to each of us.
There’s enough of the world that looks to the Church waiting and even wishing to see us fall. We must surround one another and restore one another when we see our brothers and sisters in need. We cannot become accusers, rather we must encourage one another.
Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Galatians 6:1 NIV
*Original Image by Kaybee05