This week during the routine Theological Life session at 6:30am in the morning (this is a group of young adults that discuss theology before the rest of the West Coast wakes up) we talked about calling other Christians out for what we see as misguided theology or misinterpreted scriptures. Are we called to be “unity at all costs” types of people or are there things we must stand for and speak out about? This is the tension of a technology and information saturated culture. Everyone has an opinion and everyone has a global platform to share it.
It is far too easy to call our the heresy of the other than it is to admit we personally have preached something wrong. So how do we live as salt in this cultural reality and still cling to the things that are important? I suggest we use as a guide two ideas 1) the truth matters & 2) so does how we share it.
The truth, as best as we can interpret it, demands to be proclaimed and error should be shown for what it is. There are central truths of the Christian faith that as people of faith we must cling to. It gets sketchy here because we each have our own list of essentials. We should not however be shy about holding truths and being passionate about them. I am big on grace, so when I hear something others than grace I want to stand up and tell the truth of Christ. I think it is a truth that matters greatly.
At the same time how we share the truth matters greatly as well. The group of young theologians usually conclude that in order to communicate truth well we should be in relationship. That ruins it for the world of social media. I might write a post about some truth but it sounds like nothing more than noise unless we have relationship and you know I care enough about you to be honest and call you to something better. So we are careful to share the truth in relationship. The gospel we scream at the top of our lungs to the whole world – the truth about using scripture well and avoiding unprofitable perspectives, we share in relationship. I don’t always do this well, but thankfully there is grace for that and I am learning a better way.
The truth is vitally important and when asked what we believe to be true we must convey it with clarity and humility. And it is best shared where there is enough relationship to make a difference.
What do you think? How can we stand for truth with grace?