Does The Bible Teach Tolerance?

I have been thinking through lately what Christianity looks like in a society that values tolerance more than any other issue. It doesn’t take long when a believer stands for what scripture speaks for the a great number of people to begin to retort back. Their response is simple, doesn’t the bible say not to Judge. They go on, Jesus said he didn’t judge me, so why should you.

Fact check: it is true that the bible states we do not judge men eternally. The bible also shows that Jesus did not come to condemn men.

Even though these statements are true, both are missing the context that they were said in. It is unhealthy and unwise to ever pull a verse away from its original context. When the bible communicates that Jesus does not condemn men the reason is simple, we are all ready condemned.

Before any man can come to Jesus they must come to two realizations 1. They are woefully sinful and deserving of God’s punishment. 2. The is no amount good work that can fix your sin problem.

This week in church we are going to be looking at John 3:16-21

16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19 And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.

If you take verse 16 all alone it is sunshine and smiles. God, who created the universe has decided to give us eternal life. That said, you have to ask what we are saved from. Scripture communicates clearly just a few verses later that the reason Jesus did not come to condemn men was that men were condemned already.

Without Jesus we are hopeless and helpless sinners who deserve nothing more that God’s wrath and eternity in hell.

Ok Wes, every man is messed up, and Jesus wishes to save all, why then do some people hate Jesus and reject his message.

Men have two responses to Jesus. 1. They embrace the new life given in him. 2. They love themselves and their fallen lives so much that they run from Jesus the moment they hear from him. Look at 19-21.

Every man starts the same. We are all sinners who deserve death. Jesus Christ has not come to condemn us, we do that ourselves, but instead to save us. In this we have one of two responses, either we embrace the new life he gives or reject it because we love our lives of sin more. What’s your choice?

Woah Wes this sure sounds like judgment. I tell you it’s not, you have already been judged and found as a failure. Jesus Christ came to save you from your judgement.

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