Thursday, July 28, 2016

Coexistence is part of the Christian Life

So often Christians feel like life “would be easier” if everyone was a believer. If you have ever spent more than just a few hours at an Orthodox Christian monastery or seminary, you would know this is not at all possible. I remember well how I had to overcome this myth my first year at seminary. The truth is Christians will always be surrounded by non-Christians, so it would be better to learn how to live our Christian life despite the lack of Christian examples in our immediate society.

Consider today’s Gospel Reading from Matthew 13:36-43 - At that time, Jesus went into the house. And his disciples came to him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field." He answered, "He who sows the good seed is the Son of man; the field is the world, and the good seed means the sons of the kingdom; the weeds are the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the close of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the close of the age. The Son of man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and throw them into the furnace of fire; there men will weep and gnash their teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear."

Life isn’t about being able to weed out non-believers. It is about living a New Life In Christ among non-believers. Until the return of Christ our goal must be to remain loyal and bear fruit for the glory of God. In fact, if we are able to live as Christians in a non-Christian environment, THAT is what will draw attention toward the power of a relationship with God. It was the NEW LIFE IN CHRIST of the early Christian saints that turned countless pagans to consider loving the Lord. If they see you loving God with all your heart, mind, body and soul, despite the efforts of others to turn you against God, your loyalty will be a light shining the way to God.

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