Thank you for visiting. We trust that you have enjoyed reading our articles.
Acceptance is not Approval
“Accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory” (Romans 15:7 NLT).
The blood of Jesus provides us the opportunity for forgiveness of our sins. Our sins will be cast as far as the east is from the west once we earnestly repent and ask His forgiveness. However, our society has slowly tried to redefine what is and is not a sin. In the political world, these are known as wedge issues that force people to one side or the other. By design, there is no common ground. Similarly, the enemy seeks to find issues to divide us because he knows we are weaker when divided.
Some people living a non-repented sinful life want the Body of Christ to categorize their sin as acceptable. The exact type of sin is not necessarily as important as its reclassification. The goal is to allow the sin to become acceptable and label those that do not approve as intolerant.
I have a friend living in a sinful manner with no desire to change. I do not feel it is my place to judge him. However, I do feel it is my place to love him. I know that by showing him love, I am giving glory to God. I know that God is love and great glory comes from revealing God to others without judgment. I have my own sins so I am in no place to judge anybody else, but I can and do offer intercessory prayers for my friend. I hope he prays for me too!
You can show love to others just by accepting them. Just because you don’t like what people do doesn’t mean you can’t accept them. I think that non-repented sinner need our love and acceptance the most. Jesus said in Luke 5:32, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Most of us are familiar with the story of Jesus encountering a woman accused of adultery in John 8. The men left after Jesus told them that whoever is without sin should cast the first stone. I feel that Jesus was indicating that if you are without sin, then by definition you must be God, and as such you are free to render judgment. His last words to her were, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more (John 8:11).” Our Lord had every right to offer judgment, instead offered mercy and grace. It is critical that we all recognize that He did not condone the sin and instructed her to “sin no more.”
Jesus was modeling for us the difference between acceptance and approval. We can accept people without approving of everything they do. We are called to accept everybody; we are not called to approve of everything everybody does. God loves us, but it doesn’t mean He approves of everything we do. Love is not saying I approve of everything you do. Love is saying I accept you in spite of what you do.
Prayer: Dear God, Thank you for the unconditional love you bestow upon your children. Help us to show that love to everyone we meet. You are our sovereign God, and we trust in you and you alone.
Meet the Author
Todd Shupe is a Men’s Ministry Specialist through the General Commission of United Methodist Men and is in training to be a Certified Lay Minister through the Louisiana Conference of the United Methodist Church. He currently serves as the President of the Baton Rouge District of United Methodist Men and is a Board Member for Gulf South Men and serves on the Action Team for The Kingdom Group. He is a volunteer for the Walk to Emmaus, Grace Camp, and Iron Sharpens Iron. Todd resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
We welcome your comments below.
Liked this post?
Read more below or search for more topics...
Tell Yourself The Truth “Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit” (Romans 8:5 NLT).If you were raised in a Christian home, you were surely taught the importance of honesty and always telling the truth. I feel that honesty and respect go hand in hand. You are not respecting someone if you are not telling them the truth. It is sad that we often fail to extend the same courtesy to ourselves that we extend to others. When we believe negative thoughts...
Christian Leadership at Home "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her" (Ephesians 5:25 NIV). Men have been appointed by God as the head of the home. I understand that many women find this troubling and the Bible is full of stories of courageous women that have served the body of Christ. The truth is that many men have done a terrible job of leading their house in any capacity, particularly spiritually. Many men are not even physically present in the home or if so, they do not recognize Jesus as their Lord and...
Joyful Obedience “If you love me, keep my commands” (John 14:15 NIV).If you were to list ten words to describe yourself, do you think “obedient” would be one of the words? You probably hope that when others describe you that they see some evidence of the Fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).“Obedient” is not a fruit of the Spirit but is the conscious use of our God-given free will. God has given us free will to either obey His commands or not. Since the beginning of time in the Garden of...