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Tolerance is a Two-Way Street!
Bible study on tolerance.

Often times, people advocating politically correct tolerance want others to be tolerant of them, but don't want to be tolerant of people who disagree with them.

For example, homosexuals want us to be tolerant of their beliefs and behaviors, but they don't want to be tolerant with our belief that homosexuality is a sin.

Christians Are Zealous Partisans
God commands Christians to be zealous, which means we have to be partisan.

  • "Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good" (1 Pet. 3:13)?
  • Jesus "gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds" (Tit. 2:14).

"Zealous" means "marked by fervent partisanship for a person, a cause, or an ideal" (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. 2009. Merriam-Webster Online. 30 July 2009

And Vine's Dictionary says that a zealous person is "an uncompromising partisan."

As Christians, there are some things we can't tolerate, if we obey God's command to be zealous.

Tolerating Everything is a Sin
As children of God, we must understand that godly zeal means we can't tolerate everything.

If we tolerate everything in the world, we won't be zealous. Rather, we'll be breaking God's command and living in sin.

So, as Christians we must understand there will be times we can't be politically correct.

There will be times when the world wants us to be tolerant, but we must obey God and be partisan toward God and His word, as a result of godly zeal.

Everyone is Intolerant of Something
The fact is, everyone is intolerant of something.

Ironically, even people pushing tolerance are intolerant of people they deem as intolerant.

For example, advocates of tolerance tell us to be tolerant of people based on race (of which I agree). Then, they're intolerant of people who disagree with them. So you see, they are tolerant with one group of people, and intolerant of another group of people, based on their beliefs.

Why? Because they are zealous for racial equality, and not zealous for prejudice.

The point is, everyone is zealous for something; therefore, everyone is intolerant of something. So when worldly people criticize us of intolerance, it's helpful to understand they're intolerant also.

The difference is that we have different beliefs. We are zealous for different things, resulting in intolerance for different things.

Tolerance Demands That People Tolerate Our Intolerance
As Christians, we believe we must be zealous, and thus intolerant of sin. Furthermore, we believe that total and complete intolerance is sin, and that we'll go to hell unless we repent.

Therefore, anyone in society who believes in tolerance, must tolerate our intolerance.

If not, they become intolerant, and do not live by their own code of conduct.

As God's children, we should demand that people respect our rights.

For example, Paul demanded that his rights be respected in Roman society, and appealed to Caesar. As a result he accomplished the Lord's will, and preached in Rome.

Likewise, we should appeal to our government when our rights are being taken away.

People must respect the fact that God commands us to be zealous, which means we're partisan (intolerant).

Where Do We Draw the Line?
God commands us to be zealous. So we must be partisan toward things for which we are to be zealous (enthusiastic, eager, fervent, intense, and passionate).

We are zealous for what is good, and for good deeds (1 Pet. 3:13; Tit. 2:14).

Therefore, we must be intolerant of sin, not in a worldly fashion but in the way taught by God, with love, kindness, long suffering, and patience.

Furthermore, as we become mature in the faith to teach God's word, we must speak out against sin by speaking the truth in love (2 Tim. 4:2; Tit. 1:9; Eph. 4:15).

With this, people of the world must be tolerant, because we are acting by faith through God's word.

In other words, people of the world who advocate tolerance, must be tolerant with our godly intolerance, because we are acting by faith in God's word.

Politically speaking, everyone is intolerant of something. But sometimes, we differ on what those things are.

As Christians, we are guided by God through His word, as to what we should tolerate and what we shouldn't tolerate.

As citizen of a country allowing the free practice of religion, we should demand that people respect our beliefs, even when we're intolerant of sin and speak out against it.