Sunday, December 19, 2010

Why Church Conflict? Readers Respond

Cheri Russell Eresman wrote on my Face Book.

Gary, when I was young we attended a Baptist church that went through some kind of big split. I was young enough at the time that I have no idea what caused the split. What I do remember is men fist fighting in the middle of a Sunday morning service! My sister was so traumatized that it totally turned her off church for a long time.

I have heard of similarly outrageous stories all my life but I never saw a fist fight in church. In fact, the Baptist church I grew up in was pretty even keeled and peaceful, for the most part.

But this kind of activity indicates just how immature so many of us Christians really are. The main message of Jesus was about love, forgiveness, kindness,peace and patience. I Corinthians 13 says:

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.

Children are jealous and envious so when they can't get what they want they fight.

James 3 says

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.

Immaturity. We are still like small, angry children. What is the answer?

No comments: