Vol. 5, No. 2
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We hear a great deal about the power of positive thinking. There is an old song that tells us to "Accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative." Certainly, no one who thinks clearly would want to take issue with the concept of one thinking and acting in a positive manner. Indeed, it is essential for Christian living that one think positively. No amount of negatives will make one a Christian.
However, it is impossible for us to "eliminate the negative" from our lives because there is a negative aspect to Christianity. Those who think that the negative has no place in the Bible need to read the Bible again. The Ten Commandments of the Old Covenant and the Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament are two of many places where a negative aspect can be found in the Bible's teaching.
Christians must realize that there are some things that they cannot do and still live lives that are pleasing to Almighty God. As we study the Scriptures, we find that there are long lists of sins which are set forth and we are plainly taught that "they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God" (Galatians 5:19-21). Someone one time made the statement that it takes "horse sense" to say "nay" to certain things. In order for one to be a faithful Christian, it is necessary to say "no" to some things.
Let us look, for a moment, at that list in Galatians Chapter 5. Some of the things that we find mentioned in that list are envy, fornication, strife, hatred, drunkenness and revellings. In the age and time in which we live, there is a tendency to look upon these things without thinking about them too seriously. Yet, God's Word plainly states that those who practice these and other like things will not enter into the kingdom of God.
Men have changed, but God does not change. Wrong practices can become so commonplace that we grow accustomed to them; we have become hardened. Our God is a holy God and thus is so opposed to the unholy that immorality is always an offense to him. His thoughts are not our thoughts and neither are his ways our ways.
Yes, let us be positive in areas where we can be positive, but let us never forget the negative aspect of the Christian faith and, by so doing, steer clear of those things which God has forbidden us to engage in.