The Dangers of Spiritual Privilege

We live in a wonderful nation. We have a precious freedom in this nation that should never be discounted nor taken for granted.

As Christians, we have a precious, priceless freedom in the Lord Jesus. That freedom is costly. That's the reason that God became a human...

I've said all that to say this:

We humans are prone to nitpick, criticize, and complain. Sometimes these things are necessary---and rare. More often than not, we take great pleasure in our "fault-finding" and "examining" other people's motives, hearts, and actions.

That does no one any good, for the most part. My friend Kevin Bussey ( does a marvelous job of bringing the "absurd" to light and explaining the issues around "the issues." But rarely does he harshly judge another fellow Christian. And when his judgments are heavy (which is indeed a wonderfully rare thing), he has firm scriptural support for making such acclamations.

On New Year's Eve, I was invited to a gathering of Christian friends to celebrate the coming of 2008. All in all, it was a wonderful time, and the people were marvelous.

However, one certain person (whom shall remain nameless) decided to corner me. He behaved more like a prosecutor than a fellow believer. He wanted to know why I requested prayer in a recent gathering for some very sensitive situations in the Kingdom of God in another well-known area. He wasn't concerned about these fellow believers. And if he was, he certainly had a very horrifying way of showing his concern.

As Christians, we must be very, very careful. We must avoid spiritual snobbery, and even worse, spiritual "superiority." The words of the Apostle Paul to the Church at Corinth comes to mind here:

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.

And then, to the Christians at Galatia,

Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

It's so easy to be the "armchair quarterback" of someone else's ministry, activities, family, or personality.

God hasn't called us to that task. We should be discerning, wise as serpents, and harmless as doves (in the words of Christ Himself). And we should be very, very careful when we decide to place any kind of "judgment" on God's servants.

I'm not advocating the blind following of anyone....but I am concerned that we American Christians are more "critic" than we are "Christ-like."

1 comment:

Tom Bryant said...

You're right. I am reminded of Jesus' response when the Apostles told Jesus they had stopped someone who was casting out demons because he didn't follow them. He was none too pleased. I don't think he is with us when we do the same.