If you really think about it, Jesus’ instruction is simple. He told us to love God and to love our neighbors. He told us to love our enemies. Paul explains what this godly love is all about in his letter to the Corinthians Christians (1 Corinthians 13). He also explained to the Galatian Christians what fruit is produced by those who are led and guided by the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). We can learn lessons from these passages of Scripture.
This means that God has a standard for what is right and what is wrong. He has determined it. We are not the authority. God has determined what is good manners and what is bad manners — godly conduct and evil conduct.
One can be right and yet be totally wrong. One can be absolutely right in his principles and doctrines and yet be totally wrong in attitude by showing his obnoxious, flawed and repulsive character.
To some extent, the apostle Paul was once like that. He was zealous and dedicated to what he truly believed was right. He really believed the early Christians were heretics. He thought he was serving God by killing, persecuting and putting Christians in jail. He falsely accused them of spreading wrong doctrines worthy of death. This can happen to anyone of us too. We can develop so much hatred against certain persons because we believe they are heretics and hated of God and therefore we think we have the right to ridicule them, speak evil of them and character-assassinate them.
Without realizing it, our thoughts, words and actions are obvious to others but we usually don’t see it ourselves. They can see just how flawed and bad our character is. But we’re blinded by our “own righteousness” thinking that God is on our side.
Yes, we can be wrong even though we may be right when we hate, despise and speak evil of others and accuse them of wrongdoing.
Lord, forgive us.
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