Thursday, February 21, 2013

Proverbs 29:9 Till we're blue in the face

If a wise man goes to court with a fool, the fool rages and scoffs, and there is no peace.

Once again, I'd like to add the King James version to the mix here, for I think the last part of the verse is important:

If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest.

Is there any good that can be accomplished by arguing with a foolish person? They are so convinced that their way is the right way . . . is there anything that you can do or say that will change their mind? Is it worthwhile to even try? 

Well, Solomon is telling us here, the answer is "no."

There are certain core beliefs that form the foundation of our faith in God the Father, and in the saving work of Jesus Christ, His son.  These are things that there can be no doubt about. Some people recite the Apostle's Creed, others have similar things that they use to remember the important tenets of our faith.

At the same time, there are some things that are not so vital, and that many people disagree on. Ever heard someone arguing about theistic evolution? Personally, I don't agree with them, but they think that God could have used evolutionary processes to create the world, and they will argue until they are blue in the face that it's so. I think there's less than a snowball's chance of lasting a minute in Satan's neighborhood, that some proteins got together in a puddle and a flash of lightning sparked them into the first life form, etc etc.  But some people think that the theory called evolution has real merit.

How about the way some people jump up and down and shout about which version of the Bible they want us to use? You can argue long and convincingly and point out Scriptures that support your position, but they won't yield. There is no rest for you there. 
Others have pet arguments like whether hell and the lake of fire are the same thing, or whether vegetarianism is something the Bible encourages, or some other idea that is not. all. that. important.

These people are so caught up in their arguments that they have forgotten that we agree on the "big" things. That on the important things of our faith, we are one; we are together.
Whether they mock and laugh at us, or whether they get angry and call us fools, we will get no rest. We must give it up. 
We must simply do what we know to be right --- search the Bible, and do our own research. If we follow God in faith, and are hungry to see what He will do next, we will be able to kindly (and without wrath) give them a reasonable defense of our position -- and then get some rest.

We need to remember that no one has ever come to Christ by the merits of a human argument alone . . there must be a work of the Holy Spirit in opening their heart and mind to the Gospel. We aren't the Holy Spirit! We are simply messengers, and we are bringing them something that they need to hear. Pray for them.
God will do the rest!

2 comments:

Belinda said...

I'm so glad I'm only responsible for planting a seed, and not the result. I am one to avoid conflict as much as possible, so arguing with someone on unimportant issues is not a problem for me. :)

I once had a conversation with someone who came to my door, seeking to add a member to his particular religion. When I kindly told him my beliefs, he told me it was obvious I knew my Bible and wished me a good day.
When we are faced with defending our faith, God will always give us the words. When we are arguing with a foolish person, He will also give us words. They may not be accepted, but we have peace in knowing what we said was true and we can let it go.
Great post!

Lisa said...

One thing that came to my mind when I read your post, was waaay back when I used to homeschool my girls, experiencing some of the 'jumping up and down and shout about which version of the Bible to use' kind of things. I remember it was a surprise to me, because even though I was in my 30's+ at the time, this was the first time I'd seen such strong 'convictions' of such. Sometimes I wonder, too, if this might not be part of our problem in society today... at least in the religious sector.... that so much time and energy is spent on arguing over the little things, as you've written here, creating great divides, it is forgotten that we agree on the bigger 'picture'. "United we stand, divided we fall"..... seems like overall, today, we.... America... need to be 'united' more than ever in God. Great post. Thank you Snoodles.