He entered the synagogue, and for three months debated boldly with persuasive arguments about the kingdom of God.
Paul understood that following Christ was about taking part in the building of the kingdom of God…right here…right now. But trying to “argue” someone into believing that will probably not be very fruitful. Arguments usually result in counter-arguments and resistance. From the very beginning…the followers of Jesus were already making Christianity into a left-brained, intellectual argument. In many ways we are still arguing over words and their meanings when it comes to religion. Funny…but Jesus never seemed to get into arguments with people over doctrines and dogmas. As far as we can gather from the gospels, Jesus spent His time living-out the Good News…extending love, mercy, forgiveness and compassion to all people…never seeming to care what their beliefs were. (The only people Jesus argued with were the Pharisees who held people to rigid religious rules without compassion!) Your brain can believe a lot of things…but if your heart is cold, judgmental and unloving…how can you help build the kingdom of God? Following Christ is not about being right…but being in right relationship. Following Christ is not about being correct as much as being connected to everything. An encounter with Christ leads to a transformed heart with a larger capacity for compassion. Instead of arguing…why not be the Good News that all are loved unconditionally?
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