Jim Wilson is the retired director of Community Christian Ministries in Moscow, Idaho. He will be posting regularly, so check back in soon!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Gracious Uncompromisers

But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. Now God had caused... (Daniel 1:8-9 NIV)

...Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact. He asked the king’s officer... (Daniel 2:14-15 NIV)

Daniel was uncompromising and gracious. God honored his position. Daniel was graciously uncompromising as a teenager, and he was still that way in his eighties. In fact he was that way as an old man because he was that way as a young man. If we start out compromising, it is very difficult to change.

We all know people who are uncompromising of truth, but who seem to be belligerent and ungracious. In fact, we probably know enough so that it is hard to think of being uncompromising without thinking of a bad attitude.

The converse is also true. We all know gracious, loving people, whom if we inspect closely, we find are compromisers of truth. Not to compromise is to ask for a confrontation, and confrontation might mean conflict. It may be that the former love conflict more than they love the truth. This is why the attitude shows more than the truth shows. The latter hate conflict more than they love the truth. Again the attitude shows more than the truth shows.

We seem to have two kinds of Christians: gracious compromisers and ungracious uncompromisers. We do not have many Daniels--people who are very gracious and do not compromise. These days the vote seems to be going for graciousness rather than ungraciousness. This is good if graciousness is not afraid of, or divorced from, truth.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18 NIV)

If it is God’s grace, there will not be a fear of confrontation or conflict. If it is God’s grace, it will not be divorced from truth.

We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14 NIV)

We should not make a choice between grace and truth.

(An excerpt from On Being a Christian by Jim Wilson)

No comments: