What Kind of Tone Is Appropriate in Christian Discussion?
Christians are to be gentle ,kind, lovingly compassionate, meek and humble, like Christ. That much is obvious, though not always common.
But what about some of the examples of situations where Christ was angry, or when the Apostle Paul burned with indignation?
I think it depends on the situation. Christians are suffering from a stifling and un-Biblical monotonic response to the issues we face today.
We believe one tone should apply to everything, yet Indignation is also Biblical.
Keep in mind that silence was only used by Christ during the trial for crucifixion, when He willfully gave up His life for you and I. He said nothing in His own defense.
There are many shades of Christian communication, and all are Christ like. For instance,… are you trying to encourage? For the most part ,be gentle.
Are you exhorting and spurring others on? Be hopeful and thankful.
Or are you defending the most precious life-giving Gospel,the Blood of Jesus, and Grace of God from the self-righteousness of moralistic legalists who always demand our own works be tacked on to Christ’s work? (Legalism)
Now that’s a different story. Take the Apostle Paul for instance.
II Corinthians 11:29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I do not burn with indignation? (NKJV)
Christians today need to find their voices! Rightly dividing the word of God means 2 Corinthians 11:29 is in the mix.
Our insight as to when to speak up and which tone to use may make the difference as to whether we speak up at all.
Unlike the message we are all getting from our Post-modern world today, God never meant us to keep silent, He said ,”Go and Preach the Gospel.”
A lot of essential Biblical examples stand out in regard to what tone is right and when we should use them.
Too many issues demand our voices!
A great example is this video that went viral and caused an uproar with some of the so-called,”pillars” in modern Christendom.
In the video,Jefferson Bethke Kicks the proverbial Snot Out of Legalism!
But he has a much more subtle tone than Jesus does in Luke 11:44 !
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like graves which are not seen, and the men who walk over them are not aware of them.”
Or Jesus in Matthew 23:13
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”
In fact, Bethke is well below the tone Jesus used to beat down the self-righteous Pharisees of His day!
And Bethke is also doing the Church a service just like the Apostle Paul in the book of Galatians!
Only Bethke is milder than Paul too! Like in Gal.1:6
“If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!”
In fact,Paul was far more direct as he beat down the legalists, and he even,”withstood Peter to his face.” This is the big ,long earful that Peter heard from Paul in front of Barnabas and many others. Galatians 2:11- 21
“When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong. 12 Before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group. 13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.
14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?
15 “We who are Jews by birth and not ‘Gentile sinners’ 16 know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified.
17 “If, while we seek to be justified in Christ, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker. 19 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”
Paul got in Peter’s face in front of everybody, to defend the blood of Jesus as the ONLY means to be saved!
So don’t let them make you back pedal Jefferson Bethke. Take heart!
You aren’t bashing the Church. On the contrary!
If a person loves Jesus and His Bride the Church, then he will defend the ONLY means to establish the Church.
The pure, true Gospel established by the washing and regeneration of the pure, perfect blood of Jesus Christ on the cross is the ONLY way the Church can ever exist.
Your statement is right in line with guys who have made all the difference when it counted, like Paul, and Luther, and countless others.
Jesus vs. Religion? Jesus will always win!
Speak up! Be bold!
That is our part to this world. Give them Jesus!