Have you met any difficult people in Tucson? Do you work for one? Well, maybe you are a difficult person!
The Bible locates the origin of hostility in sin. Human beings have been twisted and our original form distorted. We were created to love God and others. But sin’s warping power has distorted this natural order of interpersonal relationships. Sin has also created hostility to God. We have become rebels in thought and action. “We were God’s enemies,” Paul affirms (Romans 5:10), and he develops this thought in other passages. Hostility spilled over into every human relationship (Ephesians 2:14-16), for this was the fate of sinful humanity, as Paul wrote to the Colossians, “You were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior” (Colossians 1:21). Selfishness displaced love, leading to quarrels, to tensions, and to wars (James 4:1-3). So the Bible teaches that hostility toward others, and the resultant interpersonal and international tragedies, have their origin in sin. Sin has distorted humanity and created hostility toward God and toward others.
Two principles at work in the earth . . . God’s Authority (delegated) . . . Satan’s Rebellion (enlisted). Under either principle there may be sacrifice, service, and even “cross-bearing,” but God is more interested in obedience than activity or sacrifice. Satan always (it’s his nature) challenges true spiritual authority in some way . . . Acts 13:5-8. Why do people rebel? Deception. We live in an imperfect age, but God wants Christian unity. Leadership is the key.
React to Hostility with Kindness:
God’s own kindness is unlimited, enabling him to act as a friend even to those who are his enemies (Romans 2:4; 11:22; Ephesians 2:7; Titus 3:4). Christ’s willingness to offer himself to help the spiritually destitute shows the extent of God’s kindness. And, as God’s chosen, we are to imitate his kindness in our relationships with others (Colossians 3:12).
Colossians 3:12. . . Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
2Corinthians 6:6. . . In purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love . . .
Galatians 5:22. . . But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness . . .
Romans 3:12. . . All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.
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