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The Tolerance of Jesus The Tolerance of Jesus

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The Tolerance of Jesus

Posted by: admin on Sun, May 3, 2009

Pastor Mark Stephens


The Tolerance of Jesus
Pastor Mark Stephens
May 3, 2009

 

Jesus was wonderfully tolerant in the way He dealt with people asa we see when He met the woman of Samaria. Jews during this time fram had little to do with the despised Samaritans. but Jesus did notparticipate in what would have been "politically correct" racial or sexual prejudice. He was compassionate and tolerant toward the sinner but knew how to draw a line when it came to the sinfulness in a person's life. A story in the book of John vividly illustrates this: 

He left Judaea, and departed again into Galilee. And he must needs go through Samaria. Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour. There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.) Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans. Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither. The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly. The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he."

Jesus spoke with compassion and understanding, and He explained to her spiritual truths so well that she left her water pot and went to the city and told the men what had happened and much of the city came to meet Jesus.

During His ministry on earth, many pagan religions vied for the hearts and minds of people. Jesus' followers assumed He would want squelch those who did not agree with Him. But instead, Jesus was tolerant and dealth with those of other faiths in kindness and love. Here was a woman obviously living a sinful life, trapped by religious tradition, and spiritual blindness; yet Jesus dealt with her delicately.

Jesus could be tough at other times with the Jewish Pharisees and even His own disciples. In one of His parables, Jesus told how Satan had sowed tares or weeds in a field planted with wheat. When the sprouts came forth from the earth, the field was full of both wheat and weeds. But the owner of the field did not let his workers go and pull out the weeds. Instead he told them to let everything grow. After the harvest, then the weeds would be separated from the grain.

The point Jesus was making was to let the false teachers and the religions they follow grow; they were not to persecute or force anyone into His kingdom, they were not to violate people's freedom to choose. Jesus invites all to come to Him, but it is an individual choice to accept or reject Christ. When the harves (which represents the end of time) comes, Jesus will separate the thousands of false believers (the tares) from those who followed Him (the wheat).

History records that there have been rulers and kings in the past who have disobeyed God's Word and have manipulated and twisted God's truth for their own political purposes, such as the crusades during medieval times who carried the cross of Christ and massacred Muslims and Jews alike. Nowhere in the Bible is that supported by the teachings of Christ.

Must we tolerate those who think Christians are ignorant, foolishe and intolerant? This is the attitude Jesus wants to find in us:

"Matthew 5:38-39

 

Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also."

 



 

As an American citizen you and I have the right to believe as we see fit regardless of what is politically correct. Those who seek to suppress the principles of Christian faith do not realize their peril. A visit to countries where governments are under the influence of other religions will reveal just how precious our core freedom are here in America.

God is not tolerant of sin or other religions that lead people into everlasting darkness. The Bible says there there will be a judgment at the appointed time; for He is a jealous God, and clearly there should be not other gods before Him.

But in the meantime, this fad of tolerance-which is intolerant of defenders of the Name of Jesus-should have our stomachs churing.

As followers of Jesus Christ we have to confess that we long for a homeland that is far better and more enduring than what the world has to offer. Like the men and women mentioned in Hebrews, we are strangers and pilgrims on this earth, seeking a heavenly city whose maker and builder is God.

"

 

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