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Don't be ashamed to be a Christ-follower

A devotion on Christianity

Current Western culture frequently labels Christians as intolerant and non-inclusive of progressive views. Many times, we as Christians are scared of being shamed by others. Or worse, we don’t want to view ourselves as bigots, so we grapple with our identity.

You are a leader. Will you stand up with me against this tide, in the name of Jesus?

First, let me clarify who true Christians are. “Christian” is more than a label. True Christians are followers of Christ—and not just the ones born in a Western nation, or to a Christian family, or who wear a cross. Real Christians are people who believe in the saving grace of Jesus. We have repented and given ourselves over to God. We are a people whose faith results in godly conduct.

Who are Christians? We are the light of the world. We imbue the world with traits of deep love, sacrifice and service. We champion the downtrodden. We build hospitals and orphanages. We stand against slavery, bigotry, nepotism, despotism and tyranny. Our Leader literally died to save us and others. He is our model, and thus we are willing to do the same for others. As real Christians, we have not spread our faith by the sword, but through love and by surrendering to the executioner and the lions in the arena.

Some will reference a few events in history like the Crusades, the Inquisition, and Colonization as examples of Christian tyranny. Please show me one verse in the New Testament that says we should use force in any way, have crusades, inquisitions, or colonization. There are none. These events were human endeavors, not God-ordained or Christ-like. Some may point out that these events were carried out by Christians. No, they were done by people who called themselves Christians.

The Bible is clear: “And by this we know that we have come to know him if we keep his commandments. Whoever says ‘I know him’ but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” – 1 John 2:3-4 (ESV)

God’s commandment is not to kill, or hurt, but to spread the faith and maintain morality.

Brother, sister, let’s stop being timid. What are we scared of? Shame? They shamed our Savior. Let them bring it. Persecution? There are millions of Christians who have been persecuted before us. Let them bring it. Death? We know where we are going and as Paul says, it is far better. Let them bring it.

The Bible says we are the light of the world. Let’s know who we are. Let’s be rooted in that. From this foundation let us build our life and leadership.

Written by Dr. Wes Saade, Buckner International board chair and family physician.

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