I have known you for a very long time. You used to be on the worship team I led in the church you still attend. You were, and I assume still are, a very talented bass player. Those were fun times. But as you know God has a way of changing things and my family and I needed to leave that church we called family after 21 years.
But God continued to work in my heart. He healed me of many hurts spawned by a few in the church and taught me so much about His grace, mercy, unconditional love and acceptance. Over the past 12-13 years. He has given me a whole new outlook on life and has been working on getting me to love myself, just as I am, and to embrace who He created me to be.
Through those years of going from church to church, and from one place of employment to another I have met many beautiful people from so many different walks in life. People that at one point I would have looked down on or condemned in some way, shape, or form, have become my friends on Facebook. And I love them all dearly.
What does all this have to do with me de-friending you for the second and probably last time?
You see, these amazing friends of mine, who on occasion read my Facebook posts have had to endure many a rant from you. Your words attack not just me, but them. You degrade people, you demonize people, you talk down to and patronize people. More importantly you disqualify people from the love of God. And you do it all in the name of the One you claim to follow.
I don’t want my friends to be subjected to your hatred. I don’t want my friends to think that you or a small number of others who think like you actually represent the Gospel of Jesus. Your dismissal of the humanity of a large swath of people because of your narrow interpretation of the Bible is mind-numbing. Too many people like you, the late Jerry Falwell, and the late Fred Phelps, and Pat Robertson have turned Christianity into a fundamentalist/civil religion soaked in American patriotism, half-truths, and ignorance. And it is these very people and organizations like the American Family Association and The Family Research Counsel and not the ACLU, Democrats, the LGBT community, or other “sinners”, as you put it, that are responsible for pushing people away from the glorious Gospel of freedom, forgiveness, and unconditional love found in Jesus. It is these people and groups that Jesus spoke against in Matthew 23:13. And sadly, you buy into their rhetoric and hate.
So I de-friended you.
But I still love you and pray that you will experience the freedom found in Jesus. God has restored me time and time again when I have gotten off track or wrapped up in my own self-righteousness and He continues to do so every day. And He can do that for you.
Peace to you, my friend (just not my Facebook friend).
16 thoughts on “An Open Letter To My Ex-Facebook Friend”
For centuries Christians have differed on many scriptures and how they are to be interpreted. We have Calvinists who believe God predestines all. We have Wesleyan/Arminians who believe God has given us free will and the prevenient grace to be able to hear God calling to us and accept that grace. We have differing understandings of the Lord’s Table. We have differing opinions of baptism. yet we are gracious enough in our differences not to question the faith or sincerity of each other. For centuries, saying Jesus is your Lord and Savior and you are seeking to follow Christ faithfully was enough. That line has constantly been crossed by your friend. When one implies that believing in Christ as Lord and Savior is not enough but that you must hold to the same interpretation of Scripture that one holds to, that person has changed the Gospel.
sadly Leanne it is the mark of Evangelical Christianity in America today.
I should actually edit my statement a little more. For centuries, some Christians allowed Jesus is Lord and Savior to be enough for fellowship. But we do have a bloody past. The Inquisition, the battles in Ireland and England between Catholics and Protestants, the Huguenots in France. But in the first few centuries–the Apostles’ Creed was enough. And even at the end of the reformation–John Wesley and George Whitefield put aside their theological differences and ministered together. And in the past century we have seen Christians seeking to fellowship based on the “Jesus is Lord” commonality rather than the points of minutia which has brought division.
The problem is that true faith in Christ entails REPENTANCE! A concept completely lost on you. This means that one cannot claim the name of Christ and continue to live in sin. His/her testimony would amount to zero!
The problem is a misunderstanding of the Gospel. You, my friend. were forgiven by God before you even knew Him. The Cross of Jesus did that. Your (and my) repentance, which I actually believe is motivated by the direction of the Holy Spirit, was not the what saved you. The Good News, is what God has done for us.
And one other point that I cannot let pass, if I take your comment at face value, it seems to me that you are saying you no longer sin daily? I find that an incredible statement to make. I must confess here that I sin daily, in word, deed and thought. But because of what Jesus has done I can have an ongoing, consistent relationship with my Creator. If that relationship depended on my “testimony” then I would not have one at all. Peace to you.
By overemphasizing grace and love, you disregard God’s holiness, which is what is demanded of His people. In essence, you give license to sin.
You can never overemphasize God’s grace and love….it is what keeps us in His family. I am truly sorry Jason that you live thinking that you need to perform for our Father. You don’t, and it is only with a proper understanding of the grace of God that you (and I) are able to live more and more like Jesus. Please talk to your Pastor about all of this. He is a good man and he might be able to help you sort through some of these issues. I pray you will be free of the bondage you create for yourself. Peace to you
Oh and BTW it is Jesus who is our holiness, righteousness, sanctification, and justification. We can nave we any of those things in and of ourselves.
Mark, you think that people should be free to commit sin so long as God’s grace covers it?
Christians sin (you and I included) all the time, and yes grace does cover it. Because nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Understanding grace, does not make you want to sin more. it makes you stand in awe of the amazing love that God has for us, Understanding grace makes us want to do right and obey because God loves us so much.
But the stances you advocate, and declaring that homosexuality, despite the numerous and outright condemnations of it by God, tell me otherwise.
Jason, the reason you were blocked from my facebook page has to do with your inability to have a conversation. I have presented several topics here in my replies to you. yet you ignore them and seek not to dialogue, but to win an argument, I don’t need to win an argument with you. The grace of God helps me to live in a way that brings glory to Him, and when I fail, fall, or I am wrong in a social viewpoint, the grace and forgiveness of God is big and wide enough to still embrace my failures and weakness and sustain my relationship with Him. Please talk to your pastor, He can help you.
Then you are sorely mistaken
Again, I ask you to speak with your pastor. He can help you. He is a wise and good man.
And my pastor, who knows scripture inside and out, agrees with the fact that homosexuality is a perversion of God’s design.
I am not sure why you are bring your pastor into this. I don’t see him here calling people a perversion. And the point of this post was to get people to think about how words can wound people. And how people outside the church walls see our words as hate.
Let me give you a suggestion, and until you start doing this to others I recommend you stop attacking gay people because your attack is hypocritical.
When you see a divorced/remarried man or woman in your church, I want to you rant on them and call them adulterers, because that is what the Bible calls them.
When you see an obese person in your church I want to you berate them for being gluttonous and for lacking self-control. Because lack of self control is a sin, and its in the Bible.
The next time you see disobedient children, advise their parents to stone them to death, They are an abomination, and the Bible instructs people to kill disobedient children.
Shall I go on?
If you think that it is loving to call gay people perversions, abominations, and any other derogatory term, then you have to be consistent. Otherwise, don’t tell me your pastor agrees with you. don’t tell me that my choice to love people unconditionally is twisted, and don’t comment here anymore.
Peace to you.