Zeal for unity doesn’t preclude liberty
By: Pastor Mark Holmes, Superior Telegram
By Pastor Mark
In Jesus’ day, there was a group of people known as zealots. They received their name because of their strong commitment to Israel as a nation and follower of God.
They spent their time preparing for the coming of God’s chosen one, who would lead them out against the Romans, or by taking advantage of any opportunity that could exact their aggression against their captors.
In some ways this group was beneficial, in others they caused more problems than they prevented.
Zeal has always been an important aspect of the Christian faith. But like those of old, it can have its plusses and minuses. When should we exercise it, and when should we hold back?
An age-old dictum states: “In matters of faith, unity; in matters of opinion, liberty; in all things, charity (love).”
There are non-negotiable issues regarding the Christian faith that require our unswerving commitment and defense. These are the dictums that define the essence of our belief. However, there are many ideas that have spun from these truths that are matters more of preference than faith. Discerning which is which requires a discriminating heart directed by God.
Do we have the same amount of zeal for discernment as we have for reaction? Do we pray before we speak? Are we sure of the issues at hand?
In our quest to “unify” everyone, it is also good to consider the place that liberty and love have in the Christian faith, and allow them their influence as well.
Pastor Mark Holmes is an ordained minister in the Wesleyan Church and has served the Darrow Road Wesleyan Church since 1997.