It is with amazement that some might call arrogance
with which this author views many naïve, misdirected calls to
“do the loving
thing” in religious matters. Call it what opponents may, any
needs biblical definition.
Consider examples of misguided pleas:
1) If men differ on how to be saved, “do the loving
thing” and do not challenge views. Let all believe what they
will, and let God
sort it out in the end.
2) If people are engaged in what one sees as sin, but
they seem happy, “the loving thing” is to just live
and let live. They’ll
answer to God for it, and no one on earth is their judge.
Consider, now, biblical
1) If the Bible speaks on the plan of salvation,
students of the Bible have the responsibility to rightly understand it
Timothy 2:15) and teach it (2 Timothy 2:2). The loving thing is to
gently and to
humbly (2 Timothy 2:24-25) confront error in the hopes that truth will
understood and heeded (John 8:32; 1
2) “Brethren, if any man is overtaken in a trespass,
you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness,
yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s
burdens, and so fulfill
the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:1-2). What more need be said?
Granted, the truly loving thing will carry with it some
the air of judgmental pomposity. Paul sharply rebuked the Galatian
fell quickly from the status of hero to the unenviable position of
4:14-16), but Paul was never one to seek popularity. Instead,
terror of the Lord,” he “persuade(d) men”
(2 Corinthians 5:11).
Oh, that men would understand that “the loving
is not always the most well received. The Corinthians were made sorry
letter. Paul did not enjoy having to do so. But the eventual results
desirable. Their godly sorrow produced repentance and the ensuing
clear conscience, zeal and vindication (2 Corinthians 7:8-11). Christ
consistently spoke the love of God. He was crucified for it.
The goodness of God, the truly loving thing, should be
spoken in love, though it may or may not be received with the same
After all, the goodness of God is not designed for men’s
applause, but to lead
men to repentance (Romans 2:4).